Array-oriented Functional Programming

schedule Dec 15th 04:00 PM - 05:30 PM place Crystal 1 people 19 Interested

APL is the original functional programming language, the grand-daddy, the Godfather, and the old workhorse. But don't let Grandpa's age fool you. APL programmers have been leveraging the use of functional programming with arrays long before it was cool to be chasing pointers in an ADT using statically typed pattern matching, and they've refined their own style and approach to getting the most from a "functional paradigm."

In this workshop, you will have the chance to spend some time thinking like a functional array programmer. What makes it different? How does the code look at the end? What thought process do you go through to get there? Get a chance to play around with some classic problems and try solving them "the APL way."

Taijiquan Classics say, "Four ounces deflects a thousand pounds."

APLers might say instead, "Fifty characters solve a thousand problems."

 
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Outline/structure of the Session

1. Introduction to the APL Way

2. Basic Syntax

3. Interactive Problem Solving and Exploration

Learning Outcome

Participants should finish the workshop with a better feeling of confidence in understanding APL code, its approach to problem solving, and on potentially using such tools in their own problem domains.

Target Audience

Anyone with functional programming background who is interested in learning how to think the APL way to solve problems.

Prerequisite

Basic functional programming background.

schedule Submitted 3 months ago

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  • Naresh Jain
    By Naresh Jain  ~  3 months ago
    reply Reply

    Thanks for the proposal, Aaron.

    Looking at the proposal, I'm not clear how you plan to use 90 mins in this session. Could you please elaborate?

    Personally trying to cover APL syntax and APL Way (style of programming) in 90 mins might be a stretch. How about focusing more on the APL Way and less on the syntax?

    • Aaron W Hsu
      By Aaron W Hsu  ~  3 months ago
      reply Reply

      Syntax is, in essence, a cornerstone of the "APL Way." This workshop isn't intended to be in-depth, but more of a comparative "thought exercise" to enable functional programmers to have a chance to examine their current "tool set" and compare that tool set to the tool set used by APLers. The plan is to use a bit of a Rosetta stone style approach and allow the participants to casually explore and discuss the implications of approaching problem solving through the lens of APL on problems with which they are intimately familiar. 

      The "syntax" portion of the workshop is just a foundational "getting started" piece, and will likely take up no more than 10 minutes, at most. The vast majority of the time will be spent doing interactive, guided problem exploration as a group. 

      This is meant to be a shorter, more targeted and focused version of the more intensive workshop, and as such, will not involve as much "individual" exploration, since there isn't the time for that, and it will focus specifically on the "tool set" level concepts, with particular emphasis on the "core FP" design patterns that most functional programmers have internalized as "essential tools" for computing. 

      • Naresh Jain
        By Naresh Jain  ~  3 months ago
        reply Reply

        Thanks for the clarification, Aaron.


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