Dynamic Languages at TechEd
Tuesday morning at TechEd after the keynote, I went over to the Dynamic Languages area, introduced myself to the team and did a little promotion for my BOF session. Bill Chiles and I went over to Neil Ford’s session on Design Patterns in Dynamic Languages. Glad to see Neil updated his deck to all examples in Ruby, replacing the Groovy examples from his prior presentations at other venues.
I stopped and met Jimmy Schementi at the DyLan area on my way back to the INETA community lounge. Great enthusiasm for dynamic languages. I enjoyed Jimmy’s presentation in the afternoon on Silverlight “Dynamic Languages and the Web” and his current hot topic “Silverline.” What is Silverline? It’s Iron Ruby running in the client in Silverlight.
I talked up my Birds of a Feather Session on Dynamic Languages scheduled for Wednesday evening and invited the team to join in. Jimmy pinged John Lam on Twitter to join us as well.
On Wednesday morning, I stopped by the Dynamic Languages area again. John Lam was there so I introduced myself and spent a few minutes chatting with him.
BOF session on Dynamic Languages and the DLR
I had planned this morning to come up with some short descriptive information for the white board to kick off my evening BOF session. The Dynamic Language team had been building content on their white board since yesterday and it was the perfect description, so made my final prep work easy. Here it is:
What is a Dynamic Language?
Class of high-level programming languages such as Python, Ruby
Delays some computation (semantic binding) to runtime that static languages do at compile-time
Can extend the program @ runtime by:
· Adding new code
· Extending objects
· Modifying the type system
Provides reflection on everything
Eval-like statements, e.g. “eval(3.14*3+foo(n))”
Interactive, exploratory development of live program
Read-eval-print loop, top down & bottom up design simultaneously
Highly extensible. Very little syntax. More bang for the buck.
· domain specific languages possible in some DL’s
· support is common
On Wednesday evening, my BOF session came off well. I was delighted to have about 75 attend the session including the dynamic language product team and the C# product team. I only got about a quarter of the way into my introductory comments before I had Bill Chiles, Jimmy Schementi and John Lam actively engaged in the discussion with participants. Birds of a Feather sessions are all about discussion so this was great. I hope all who attended gained gained from attending.