Ephox engineer George Wilson presented at LambdaJam in Brisbane, Australia, earlier this year. His talk on trade-offs in algebra helps explore what developers can use from mathematics, particularly in respect to functional programming:
Functional programmers love to steal ideas from mathematics. Perhaps the best example of this is the venerable monoid, a concept from abstract algebra. But what about other algebraic structures? Semigroups and semilattices, related to monoids and beloved by mathematicians, are also ripe for use by programmers. We will explore these abstractions, their uses, and familiar concretions that fit. We’ll also look at the trade-off that helps us choose which is the right algebraic structure for the job.
George is an enthusiastic functional programmer from Brisbane. George engineers web services at Ephox by day, and waxes poetic about lenses and all things Haskell at Brisbane Functional Programming Group by night.
Check out George’s talk: