PurelyFunctional.tv Newsletter 245: V2, Scale, Perl
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Issue 245 - October 2, 2017
Well, this was a busy week for me! In a good way, of course.
Please enjoy the issue.
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Introduction to Clojure V2 Course
My original course was Introduction to Clojure. I did a Kickstarter to presell it back in 2013. Hundreds of people, if not thousands, have bought the course since then.
I have been reviewing my older courses and this one needed some work. I'm simply better at making courses than I was. I have completely re-recorded it. The slides are the same. And the premise is the same (teaching a robot to bake), but there is much more explanation of what you're doing and things are more carefully edited. What was a 1.5 hour course is now a little over 6 hours.
In addition to re-recording, I created a git repo with all of the code we type throughout the course. The repo is tagged so you can jump around to exactly where you want to be in the course. One of the big complaints was people getting stuck on a typo and not continuing. There are also about 100 pages of written notes.
Another big change was the addition of Nightlight, the browser-based Clojure editor that you set up as a Leiningen plugin. No more "use whatever editor you're comfortable with". Nightlight is great. It's got parinfer, Clojure syntax highlighting, and an insta-repl, all without installing anything.
I'm not quite done with the course. There are some reference sheets I'd like to create. But that said, I'm surprised by how well the "bones" of the course stood the test of time. Most of the slides are the same, as were the exercises. However, now it should flow better. Look out for a launch soon.
I finished this book last week. It was recommended in a talk by Alan Kay. It's an excellent book that tries to find universal laws that living organisms, cities, and companies obey, regardless of their scale. For instance, it appears that mammals, on average, will have the same number of heartbeats in their lifetimes, regardless of the size of the mammal. It makes me think about scaling laws of software. One of the things he talks about is how there are efficiencies of scale, such as larger animals being more metabolically efficient per kilogram than smaller animals. Could we find such laws for software? What would we even measure? Everything I've seen is that things always get worse as scale goes up. Can we find a way to make the problems scale sub-linearly?
The speaker lineup is filled! I'm very happy with how it turned out. Buy your tickets!
3X - Explore, Expand, Extract YouTube
I've been getting into Kent Beck's new project he's calling 3X. He invented Extreme Programming, but is now going much deeper, based on what he sees at Facebook, where he works.
Joe Armstrong interviews Larry Wall, creator of Perl. Wall talks about Perl 6 and its influences. He was one of the first people I started reading online back in the 1990s when Perl's popularity was at its height.
Applicative Functors Podcast
I found this podcast somehow, which is an experienced functional programmer trying to explain concepts to new functional programmers. It's pretty interesting to listen in as people learn. We need more people popularizing these concepts, so I applaud them.
Please consider donating to or applying to the Opportunity Grant program.
A quick intro to the Why and How of Luminus by the creator himself, Dmitri Sotnikov.