MonoDevelop & Teaching F# & QCon tutorial

It appears that I have been doing a lot more talking than writing in the last two months. I'm hoping to change this direction and I have two articles almost ready, so stay tuned! I was also posting all my interesting F# snippets to, which has grown quite a bit since I announced it in the last blog post. Thanks to everybody who submitted their snippets already and I'm looking forward to more! By the way, you can now run snippets using by clicking at "Load in TryF#" button.

In the meantime, the queue with talk materials that I wanted to post on my blog has grown to 3. I talked about F# in MonoDevelop in the Mono room at FOSDEM in February, then I did an online talk for the Community for F# . Finally, this week, I did a tutorial on F# with Phil Trelford at QCon in London (to fill in for Michael Stal due to unexpected health reasons).

Before I move on to writing about my recent experiments with LINQ, you can find materials from all of the recent talks below...

F# in MonoDevelop (Mono Room @@ FOSDEM)

In the Mono room talk, I demonstrated that F# can now be used in MonoDevelop thanks to the F# plugin that I worked on recently. (We still need to update the plugin to work with MonoDevelop 2.6 beta and contributors are welcome!)

To show some of the features of F# in MonoDevelop, I talked about areas where F# works very nicely including functional programming and composability; scripting and exploring when working with external data sources or new .NET/Mono libraries and server-side programming (I believe there should be more server-side frameworks for F#!)

You can get slides and source code from the talk from my Documents repository at GitHub:

Teaching F# (Recording available)

In this talk for the Community for F#, I tried to explain what makes F# a great programming language for teaching. In summary, the reasons are that F# is close to mathematics and theory, but can be used for very practical programming at the same time. This means that teaching F# also teaches students theoretical background. However, they can write exciting applications and gain skills valued by the real-world.

In the talk, I demonstrated one possible approach. We can start by writing simple mathematical expressions (such as high-school math) and then use exactly the same principles based on expressions and composition for composing graphics. This can be even extended to 3D objects!

Here are links to slides, examples and also talk recording:

F# Tutorial (QCon London)

My most recent appearance was together with Phil Trelford. We were asked to do an F# tutorial to fill in for Michael Stal. This means that we had one weekend to get ready for the tutorial, but I believe that the tutorial went quite well.

We used approach that I used in my functional book and started with some C# examples of functional programming style. Then we looked how to write the same thing in F# (which looks, of course, much nicer). We also did a large practical sample - starting from domain modelling using functional data types, looking at testing and ending with reactive user interface using Silverlight.

During the tutorial, we mentioned that we're working on turning the material presented during the tutorial into a more comprehensive Functional Programming Training organized at SkillsMatter. If you're interested in learning more, let me know! I'll definitely write about it on this blog when we have some public announcement ready.

Published: Wednesday, 9 March 2011, 4:01 PM
Author: Tomas Petricek
Typos: Send me a pull request!
Tags: presentations, webcast, functional, links