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  1. 1 point
    An other way to understand this is to look at SystemC/TLM as pure C++ code and see what is going on.. Let us assume that you have two classes, "Initiator" and "Target", that need to communicate with each other. Target implements a function called "transport" to be called by Initiator, and Initiator implements a function called "response" - that is called by target. For the sake of the explanation here, the payload itself is not important, which we will assume is plain "int" in both directions. You would normally do this as following: // Interface classes: class initiator_if { public: void response(int i) = 0; }; class target_if { public: void transport(int i) = 0; }; class Initiator : public initiator_if { public: // Implement the interface void response(int i) { cout << "Got: " << i << " from target" << endl; } void bind(target_if &_if) { // Store the pointer locally m_target = &_if; } }; class Target : public target_if { public: // Implement the interface void transport(int i) { cout << "Got: " << i << " from initiator " << endl; } void bind(initiator_if &_if) { // Store the pointer locally m_initiator = &_if; } }; Next we instantiate the objects and "bind" them: Initiator initiator; Target target; initiator.bind(target); target.bind(initiator); I hope you are seeing where we are going with this. What has been done above is a crude equivalent of sc_port binding. There is one problem however with the approach above. What if the class "Target" doesn't implement the target_if directly? Like so: class TargetGrandChild : public target_if { public: void transport(int i) { // Implement the interface.. cout << "Got " << i << " from initiator (in grand child)" << std::endl; } }; class TargetChild { public: TargetGrandChild gch; /* Other stuff.. */ }; class Target { public: TargetChild ch; /* Other stuff.. */ }; One way to deal with this is to change the way bind function is called: initiator.bind(target.ch.gch); This is ugly. Firstly, it makes the client of bind function dependent on an internal design aspect of the "Target" class. For example, if the Target class changes tomorrow (to let the TargetChild implement the "target_if" directly), the bind function call needs to change. Also, to allow the client to call the bind function as above, the elements "ch" and "gch" must be made public, which may not be necessarily a good thing. A way out is to have an additional indirection. Let us call this as simple_export (a very simplified version of sc_export): class simple_export : public target_if { public: void transport(int i) { // One level of indirection p_real_target->transport(i); } void bind(target_if &_if) { p_real_target = &_if; } private: target_if *p_real_target; }; The new version of the Target class now looks like the following: class TargetGrandChild : public target_if { public: void transport(int i) { // Implement the interface.. cout << "Got " << i << " from initiator (in grand child)" << std::endl; } }; class TargetChild { public: TargetGrandChild gch; /* Other stuff.. */ }; class Target { public: simple_export port; private: // private is ok TargetChild ch; /* Other stuff.. */ Target() { // Tell "export" where the real implementation is port.bind(ch.gch); } }; The initiator will be "bound" to the target like so: initiator.bind(target.port); So for the simple_export to work, you need two binds: First is where the initiator is bound to the simple_export instance Second is when the "real" implementation is bound to the simple_export instance The simple_export class acts like a bridge. It forward the calls from the initiator to the "real" implementation. In case the "Target" itself implements the interface, the bind would look like: class Target : public target_if { public: simple_export port; private: // private is ok TargetChild ch; /* Other stuff.. */ Target() { // Tell "export" where the real implementation is port.bind(*this); } }; I hope this explains the line you pointed out in the code. The TLM socket has both a port and an export. Please note that the code snips above does not correspond to how OSCI simulator actually implements sc_port/sc_export!
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