I'm looking for a metaphor.
A friend of mine taught me to use metaphors from nature, everyday life, math, and use them to design my projects. They can help in creating a better design or better understanding or the problem, and they are cool.
Now I'm working on a project with hardware and micro-controllers in C. For convenience, I have decided to use multiple micro-controllers as co-processor units for real-time (the slaves) and a master.
This has saved me a lot of headache: I can code the main logic in the master without paying too much attention to super optimizing everything; I don't care if I need some blocking-call; I don't worry about serial communication with the computer. I just send messages to the slaves and they are super fast super in real time.
I like my design and it seems to work well.
So here are the important concepts that I'm trying capture in the metaphor:
- hierarchy of processing
- Not using one big brain but rather several small, distributed brain units
- using distributed power or resources
I'm looking for a good metaphor for this concept of having one unit synchronize the work of all the others. Preferably, the metaphor would come from nature, biology, or zoology.