The good news is that Jeremy Gibbons is writing a book on Patterns in Functional Programming. Even better news is that he is blogging about it as he goes along!
Those unfamiliar with the topic may want to begin at the beginning, though I personally just rummaged around. Some may enjoy going to the papers rather than the blog, or even better to the LtU discussions about many of them. Alternatively, I think it might be a great opportunity to ask Jeremy questions using the comments on his blog. I am sure this can be a very productive learning experience, and will surely help the book!
Albert Gräf is the author of the Pure programming language. Pure is a functional programming language based on term rewriting. It has a syntax featuring curried function applications, lexical closures and equational definitions with pattern matching, and thus is somewhat similar to languages of the Haskell and ML variety. Pure is also a dynamic language, and is more like Lisp in this respect. The interpreter has an LLVM backend that does JIT compilation.
Part 1 and Part 2
Habit is a systems programming dialect of Haskell from the High-Assurance Systems Programming (HASP) project at Portland State University. From The Habit Programming Language: The Revised Preliminary Report
This report presents a preliminary design for the programming language Habit, a dialect of Haskell that supports the development of high quality systems software. The primary commitments of the design are as follows:
* Systems programming: Unlike Haskell, which was intended to serve as a general purpose functional programming language, the design of Habit focusses on features that are needed in systems software development. These priorities are reﬂected fairly directly in the new features that Habit provides for describing bit-level and memory-based data representations, the introduction of new syntactic extensions to facilitate monadic programming, and, most signiﬁcantly, the adoption of a call-by-value semantics to improve predictability of execution. The emphasis on systems programming also impacts the design in less direct ways, including assumptions about the expected use of whole program compilation and optimization strategies in a practical Habit implementation.
* High assurance: Although most details of Haskell’s semantics have been formalized at some point in the research literature, there is no consolidated formal description of the whole language. There are also known differences in semantics, particularly with respect to operational behavior, between different Haskell implementations in areas where the Haskell report provides no guidance. Although it is not addressed in the current report, a high-priority for Habit is to provide a full, formal semantics for the complete language that can be used as a foundation for reasoning and formal veriﬁcation, a mechanism for ensuring consistency between implementations, and a basis for reliably predicting details about memory allocation, asymptotic behavior, and resource utilization.
HASP has a couple of postdoc positions open to help with Habit.
In Invertible Syntax Descriptions: Unifying Parsing and Pretty Printing, Rendel Tillmann and Klaus Ostermann at the University of Marburg, Germany apply the "don't repeat yourself" principle to parsers and pretty printers.
Parsers and pretty-printers for a language are often quite similar, yet both are typically implemented separately, leading to redundancy and potential inconsistency. We propose a new interface of syntactic descriptions, with which both parser and pretty-printer can be described as a single program. Whether a syntactic description is used as a parser or as a pretty-printer is determined by the implementation of the interface. Syntactic descriptions enable programmers to describe the connection between concrete and abstract syntax once and for all, and use these descriptions for parsing or pretty-printing as needed. We also discuss the generalization of our programming technique towards an algebra of partial isomorphisms.
Concurrent Pattern Calculus by Thomas Given-Wilson, Daniele Gorla, and Barry Jay:
Concurrent pattern calculus drives interaction between processes by comparing data structures, just as sequential pattern calculus drives computation. By generalising from pattern matching to pattern unification, interaction becomes symmetrical, with information flowing in both directions. This provides a natural language for describing any form of exchange or trade. Many popular process calculi can be encoded in concurrent pattern calculi.
Barry Jay's Pattern Calculus has been discussed a few times here before. I've always been impressed with the pattern calculus' expressive power for computing over arbitrary structure. The pattern calculus supports new forms of polymorphism, which he termed "path polymorphism" and "pattern polymorphism", which are difficult to provide in other calculi. The closest I can think of would be a compiler-provided generalized fold over any user-defined structure.
This work extends the pattern calculus to the concurrent setting by adding constructs for parallel composition, name restriction and replication, and argues convincingly for its greater expressiveness as compared to other concurrent calculi. He addresses some of the obvious concerns for symmetric information flow of the unification operation.
I actually found this to be rather funny.
A Preliminary Survey on Functional Programming. Caitlin Sadowski and Daan Leijen
Functional programming has had a profound impact on the development of mainstream languages such as C# or Java. We wanted to get a better sense of developer’s perceptions of functional programming, and also better understand which functional programming concepts are useful to developers. This paper reports the results of a preliminary survey on this topic.
The survey was sent to 100 programmers working at Microsoft, 19 responded, and of these only 14 were familiar with the term functional programming.
I will refrain from snarky remarks.
Oleg just posted a new page, First-class modules: hidden power and tantalizing promises, related to new features in OCaml 3.12 (on LtU).
First-class modules introduced in OCaml 3.12 make type constructors first-class, permitting type constructor abstraction and polymorphism. It becomes possible to manipulate and quantify over types of higher kind. We demonstrate that as a consequence, full-scale, efficient generalized algebraic data types (GADTs) become expressible in OCaml 3.12 as it is, without any further extensions. Value-independent generic programming along the lines of Haskell's popular ``Generics for the masses'' become possible in OCaml for the first time. We discuss extensions such as a better implementation of polymorphic equality on modules, which can give us intensional type analysis (aka, type-case), permitting generic programming frameworks like SYB.
It includes a nice intro to first-class modules by Frisch and Garrigue: First-class modules and composable signatures in Objective Caml 3.12.
OCaml definitely just got even more interesting.
This is just a series of blog posts so far, as far as I can tell. But Andrej Bauer's work has been mentioned here many times, I am finding these posts extremely interesting, and I'm sure I will not be alone. So without further ado...
Programming With Effects. Andrej Bauer and Matija Pretnar.
I just returned from Paris where I was visiting the INRIA πr² team. It was a great visit, everyone was very hospitable, the food was great, and the weather was nice. I spoke at their seminar where I presented a new programming language eff which is based on the idea that computational effects are algebras. The language has been designed and implemented jointly by Matija Pretnar and myself. Eff is far from being finished, but I think it is ready to be shown to the world. What follows is an extended transcript of the talk I gave in Paris. It is divided into two posts. The present one reviews the basic theory of algebras for a signature and how they are related to computational effects. The impatient readers can skip ahead to the second part, which is about the programming language.