reference counting

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reference counting

(programming)
A garbage collection technique where each memory cell contains a count of the number of other cells which point to it. If this count reaches zero the cell is freed and its pointers to other cells are followed to decrement their counts, and so on recursively.

This technique cannot cope with circular data structures. Cells in such structures refer (indirectly) to themselves and so will never have a zero reference count. This means they would never be reclaimed, even when there are no references from outside the structure.
References in periodicals archive ?
(2013) for RBC's and Hb who observed notable reduction in RBC's and Hb of infected animals compared to the reference count. Leka et al.
By dividing cited reference count by the number of articles published, a journal that publishes many articles in a time frame can be compared to a journal in the same discipline that published fewer articles in that same time period.
At 24 hours' follow-up, investigations of the reference method were available in 5 mismatch cases, of which 2 cases trended toward the former reference count, whereas 3 cases showed a tendency toward the XE-5000 count of the previous day.
His eosinophil count was slightly high, 0.69 x [10.sup.9] cells/L (reference count <0.4 x [10.sup.9] cells/L).
Appended are: (1) Available immediacy scholarly articles; (2) Coding book of definitions; (3) Immediacy terminology and reference/citation coding sheets; (4) Coding book exclusions and inclusions; (5) Inter-coder reliability results; (6) Total general reference count per textbook; (7) First four chapter page count, total book page count; (8) Total paragraphs contains any immediacy term; and (9) Actual chapter titles and subtitles.
All samples were processed by a Coulter LH750 which provided the automated platelet count (i.e., reference count).
A COM object watches its reference count and causes itself to disappear once the reference count goes to zero.
Herlihy [Herlihy 1991] proposed a solution to this problem by using accurate reference count for each handle.
In the event of a system failure, the recovery manager performs logical UNDO (i.e., increment or decrement) for reference count updates, and creates weak references to UNDO reference deletions.
Direct identification of garbage is effected by a reference count: a record of the number of references to a cell [Collins 1960; Weizenbaum 1963].
QueryInterface is used to obtain additional interface pointers supported by the object, while AddRef and Release increment and decrement a reference count to enable the server to know when all clients have finished using the interface.