Functional Programming?

*To*: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net*Subject*: [mg92006] Functional Programming?*From*: bertmayo <bertmayo at earthlink.net>*Date*: Tue, 16 Sep 2008 19:26:25 -0400 (EDT)

John Gray's book "Mastering Mathematica" has a a chapter on functional programming in Mathematica. For more on fp techniques in the context of longer programs see http://book.realworldhaskell.org/ where there is a preliminary copy of a book, "Real World Haskell" to be published soon by O'Reilly. Many tutorials and books are to be found at www.haskell.org For scientific programming see "OCaml for Scientists" by Jan Harrop, which can be ordered from http://www.ffconsultancy.com/products/index.html Also at your local bookstore is Harrop's book, "F# for Scientists". (I saw a copy at Borders yesterday) F# is Microsoft's adaptation of the ML family of functional programming languages. And I would be remiss if I didn't mention the bible of computer science, Abelson and Sussman, "Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs" from the MIT press. This book is to computers what the Feynman Lectures are to physics, and anybody who programs should read it three or four times in their lives. This book is written in the context of the functional programming language Scheme, a dialect of Lisp. Free downloadable videos of the corresponding course are available from the MIT web site. I just watched them this year. BTW, I have been programming for 45 years, so being an old guy shouldn't stop you. It just means that the world offers so many new and intreresting things to learn about as we go along. For example I am learning that the structure of haskell has a number of tie-ins with abstract mathematics such as category theory, and this is rather what I naively imagined computer programming would be like before I took my first computer course in 1963. --Bert Mayo