Category: general

New domain is here

On Tuesday I moved my blog to a different domain. Please update your bookmarks to point to http://lambda.jstolarek.com (the old address will redirect you anyway) and your RSS feeds to http://lambda.jstolarek.com/feed/. Because of domain change your RSS readers might have downloaded all the posts that you have already read – sorry for that. I know that in the past some of you have been experiencing problems with my blog: the directory listing was displayed instead of the main page. I am unable to resolve that problem on the server I am currently using so the plan is to move to a more reliable machine. New domain will make this change transparent. Big thanks go to my friend Robert for helping me with all of this.

Some technical issues

I’ve been reported that some people experience technical issues with my blog and in fact I experienced them myself. The common problem is that sometimes a particular post won’t load. Instead you get a RSS feed. Reloading the page doesn’t help in any way. I don’t know what’s causing the issue, but it’s certainly not browser-specific. Googling suggests that it might be problem with hosting but I wasn’t able to pin the problem yet. The only solution that seems to work is cleaning the cookies and then reloading the page (at least it worked for me). If anyone has any suggestion regarding this I’ll be glad to hear them.

It also happened to me twice that I got a listing of directory on the server instead of the actual web page. This is definitely issue on the server side. Reloading the page solves the problem.

Diving into functional programming

I started programming when I was about twelve years old. Me and my friend got a book about writing programs in QBasic for Amiga. At first we were just copying code from the book. Later I started to make my own code. It was crappy – I wasn’t even able to use functions – but it got me hooked. Soon I moved to Pascal and got slightly more advanced. Not only did I learn about functions but even about objects :-) When I was in high school (age 16 or so) I began coding in C++. After high school the choice of studies was obvious for me – computer science. I went to Technical University of Łódź, biggest technical college in my city and one of the best in Poland. During studies I learned a lot about programming. Java became my main language for about 4 years, but I’ve had experience with other languages: Ada, Perl, Bash/AWK and Matlab, to name the most important. After graduating in 2008 I got a job at my own department as a researcher and lecturer. Matlab became my language of choice, since I was doing research in digital signal processing. These research were successful enough to earn me a PhD.

What’s the point in me telling you this? As you can see, there’s been a lot of programming in my life. If I were to name one thing I am really good at, these would be it. I was always convinced that I can code everything and I have all the fundamental knowledge of that field. I was wrong.

What programming paradigms are there? There’s the dominating object oriented programming paradigm and there’s structural programming, often treated as a contrast to OO programming. Everyone knows these two, at least I knew them. I also knew about the existence of Prolog and therefore the logical programming paradigm. But there is one more paradigm, which I wasn’t aware of: functional programming. I first heard the term ‘functional programming’ about four months ago and I started to be inquisitive. Is there really some different way of writing programs that I am not aware of? It turns out that yes, there is. During last months I realized how little I knew about programming and how many ingenious concepts were hidden away from me. I don’t like to be ignorant when it comes to programming so I started learning about functional programming (which I will abbreviate as FP). This blog will document my journey through this field. I’ll post various stuff on FP and other fields of computer science. I hope that sharing my knowledge will give others the motivation to explore this fascinating subject.

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