Sony Proposes A New Soft Watchdog For Linux
This proposed "softwatchdog" would carry out tasks besides a hard reboot. such as taking pre-defined action if the system is running slow or on low memory situations.
This soft watchdog could be integrated with various low-memory / out-of-memory daemons for helping take action on memory hungry / low priority applications when such conditions appear. This soft watchdog can also work standalone to take action itself in out-of-memory situations to kill processes. Other policies could also be created.
The soft watchdog proposal sent out today is a "request for comments" so we'll see at this point where the work leads. For Sony's part in this appears to be motivated for Android/embedded use-cases.
This soft watchdog proposal can be found on the kernel mailing list.