I've been trying to learn more about functional programming in general lately, and there's a lot of good stuff around to read on it. Unfortunately for me, a lot of the content on the web on the topic uses Haskell to explain the concepts, and I find the Haskell syntax to be somewhat intrusive when trying to get a grip on the core concepts. Still, I probably should make a bigger effort in understanding Haskell :-).

While reading up on this topic, I ran across the Functional Javascript library, which I think is pretty cool. I'm constantly surprised just by how flexible and powerful JS is, and it's a real pity that such a great programming language has been so closely associated with the browser throughout its history. I still suck at JS programming, but that doesn't mean I can't appreciate the elegance and power some of the libraries and constructs for the language have to offer.

By the way, I've also become a great fan of programming.reddit.com; it's been a very valuable source of interesting links, blogs and articles focusing on dynamic and functional programming, among other topics.

(While on the topic of functional programming, it's good to know I wasn't the only one confused by wikipedia's entry on currying).

Functional Programming on .NET

Now that .NET 3.5 has RTM, some of the constructs in C# 3.0 make it possible to adopt a more functional style of programming on C#. Some of it was possible in C# 2.0, but the anonymous delegate syntax was still a bit too cumbersome. The new lambda syntax makes it a lot nicer, easier to read and easier to code (though because of the static typed nature of the language it can still be a bit cumbersome at times). Eric white has a lot of interesting tutorials on functional programming with C# 3.5 and LINQ on his blog, in case you haven't yet run across them.

Obviously F# is the functional programming on .NET for now, and it has tons of really good stuff, though personally I'm still trying to wrap my head around it.

I think that, overall, there's ton of good things to learn from other programming paradigms that can helpo make you a better developer even if you're writing your code in a language favoring a more traditional approach. It's certainly very valuable to understand and learn different approaches to problem-solving and incorporate them into your arsenal.

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Tomas Restrepo

Software developer located in Colombia.