Making Exception Handling Work



Most modern programming languages rely on exceptions for dealing with errors. Although exception handling was a significant improvement over other mechanisms like checking return codes, it's far from perfect. In fact, it can be argued that this mechanism is seriously flawed. In this paper we argue that exception handling should be automatically done at the runtime/operating system level. The motivation is similar to the one that lead to garbage collection: memory management was a tedious and error prone process, thus virtual machines included support for taking care of it. We believe that many exceptions can be automatically dealt with, and recovered, as long as appropriate mechanisms exist in the runtime environment. We believe that this approach may dramatically influence the way programming languages are designed and significantly contribute to having more robust code, being actually developed with much less programming effort.


Exception handling mechanisms


HotDep06, November 2006

Cited by

Year 2012 : 2 citations

 Rami Rashkovits and Ilana Lavy, Students' Understanding of Advanced Properties of Java Exceptions, in Journal of Information Technology Education: Innovations in Practice, Meliha Handzic (Ed.), Volume 11, 2012.

 Rashkovits, Rami and Lavy, Ilana, Students’ Misconceptions of Java Exceptions, in Knowledge and Technologies in Innovative Information Systems, Rahman, Hakikur and Mesquita, Anabela and Ramos, Isabel and Pernici, Barbara (editors), Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing, Volume 129, Springer Berlin Heidelberg, pages 1-21, 2012.

Year 2011 : 1 citations

 Rami Rashkovits and Ilana Lavy, Students’ Strategies for Exception Handling, in Journal of Information Technology Education: Innovations in Practice, Meliha Handzic (Ed.), Volume 10, 2011.

Year 2010 : 2 citations

 R. Rashkovits, I. Lavy, "Coping with abstraction in object orientation with a special focus on application errors," in 5th International Conference on Computer Science and Education (ICCSE), pp.277-287, 24-27 Aug. 2010.

 P. Fatourou, T. Riegel, P. Felber, C. Fetzer, The Distributed Computing Column, Composable Error Recovery With Transactional Memory. EATCS Bulletin, North America, 0, jan. 2010.

Year 2008 : 1 citations

 Haryadi S. Gunawi, Cindy Rubio-Gonzalez, Andrea C. Arpaci-Dusseau, Remzi H. Arpaci-Dusseau, Ben Liblit, "EIO: Error Handling is Occasionally Correct", in Proc. of the 6th USENIX Conference on File and Storage Technologies (FAST "08), San José, California, USA, February 2008