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Re: [802.3_MAINT] summary of MAC interface issues

I took a look at the state machines, etc. some more.  Shimon states the
problem well in that TransmitFrame does not run instantaneously, yet the
state machine conventions could imply that the call to TransmitFrame
requires no waiting for completion.

Shimon, do you know of any other aspect in the state machine conventions
that would indicate that a call to TransmitFrame requires waiting for
completion of that routine?  Clause 4 seems to imply that algorithms are
executed very fast.

State machine conventions do not imply any "waiting"
in a state. If you want to wait for something, you
define a variable and wait for it before you take a
transition to the next state. TransmitFrame does not
return any variables that we can use, nor does our
state machine wait for them --- we just go to the next
state via UCT. That is exactly the problem: we may
do another call for TransmitFrame before the previous
one was completed.

The algorithms in clause 4 are "executed very fast",
but they do not assume that things are instantaneous.
That is why they use different Pascal constructs, with
one of them being a function. Unlike a procedure, a
function stalls the execution of the in-line code
until the function returns, so that you can rely on
the work that was done in the function. This is what
makes our MAC work in the first place, but it breaks
our state machine in this case.