Functional Programming in Perl

Length: 60 minutes


I have recently had published a book on functional programming techniques for the Perl programming language. Some have suggested that this was the product of a deranged mind; others say it was only the product of garden-variety stupidity. In this talk, I hope to persuade you that this effort was neither demented nor unusually foolish.

I discuss the value of functional programming techniques, with particular attention to the value that they provide to the great proletariat of the programming community. I talk about the support that Perl provides for those techniques, and the support that it fails to provide, and I contrast this support with that of similar languages, such as Python. I also sneak in some discussion of Common Lisp, Java, Standard ML, and Haskell along the way.

This talk was delivered to the University of Pennsylvania Programming Languages Club on 9 September 2005.


Painting by Swabian artist Hans Baldung-Grien (c1484 - c1545).

Oil on wood, 1512, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa.

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