Copenhagen Programming Language Seminar


Don Syme
Microsoft Research, Cambridge

Thursday March 26 2009, 10:15-12:00
Lundbeck Auditorium, Biocenter, U. Copenhagen (ca. 500 m south of DIKU)


Microsoft recently announced that it will be supporting F# as a first class language in Visual Studio 2010. In this talk, we will first look at why Microsoft is investing in functional programming at all, through the themes of simplicity, economics and programmer satisfaction. We'll also take a look at who uses F#, why, and what they gain from it.

The majority of the talk will be more technical and look at the more innovative aspects of F# that help to simplify programming. In particular F# extends the familiar core of a functional programming language design (shared with OCaml) with the following

  • Type-inferred object-oriented programming
  • Computation expressions ("monads"), particularly for asynchronous, parallel and reactive programming
  • Units of measure, a "type system for floating point numbers"
  • F# Quotations, for language integrated models
  • We'll look at these in overview and why they have been added to the language. Along the way I'll give some simple demonstrations of using F# for explorative programming.


    Don Syme is a Senior Research at Microsoft Research, UK, and is responsible for the design of the F# programming language. He has contributed extensively to the design of the .NET platform through the design and implementation of .NET and C# generics. His research focuses on the technical aspects of programming language design and implementation needed to make functional languages that are simpler to use, interoperate well with other languages and which incorporate aspects of object-oriented, asynchronous and parallel programming. He has a PhD from the University of Cambridge and a BSc. from the Australian National University.

    Scientific host:Fritz Henglein Administrative host: Annette Enggaard. All are welcome.
    The Copenhagen Programming Language Seminar (COPLAS) is a collaboration between DIKU, ITU, KVL and RUC.
    COPLAS is sponsored by the FIRST Graduate School.
    To receive information about COPLAS talks by email, send a message to prog-lang-request@mail.it-c.dk with the word 'subscribe' as subject or in the body.

    For more information about COPLAS, see http://www.coplas.org