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Cultivating an Engineering Dialect

YOW! Lambda Jam 2021

Haskell has seen success in commercial environments, with teams of professional engineers choosing it for its claims of reliability, a rapid development pace, and easier maintenance over the long term. On top of that, a large community of hobbyist tinkerers and academic researchers are always releasing new and exciting abstractions, libraries, and language extensions, each offering improved ways to structure, build, and test our programs.

Engineering teams have diverse knowledge and skill levels, and new team members need to come up to speed to work effectively. This poses us a challenge: which abstractions, libraries, and language extensions should we choose from the ever-growing pool? How should we determine what level of Haskell to adopt? Should we always embrace the cutting-edge to squeeze out every advantage, leaving new hires in the dust? Should we reject novelty and focus only on the “simple” or “boring” ways of doing things, even if doing so gives up some potential effectiveness?

This talk will bring clarity to these questions. Rather than prescribe a uniform solution, we offer you the tools of thought to make informed, intentional decisions, and cultivate an engineering dialect that works for you.

George Wilson

Functional Programming Engineer



George Wilson is an enthusiastic functional programmer from Brisbane, Australia. George is known for his distinctive talks about useful abstractions. He is currently at PaidRight, helping Australians get paid correctly, and was a founding member of the Queensland Functional Programming Lab (QFPL). George sits on the Haskell Core Libraries Committee, which guides the direction of Haskell's standard library, and he co-organises the Brisbane Functional Programming Group.