Michele Pagani michele.pagani at pps.univ-paris-diderot.fr
Mon Sep 19 07:24:46 EDT 2016


let me advertise the following MOOC on OCaml by Roberto di Cosmo, Yan
Regis-Gianas and Ralf Treinen. It will start next week !


A MOOC to learn functional programming with the OCaml programming language

Functional programming allows to write expressive, concise and elegant programs,
and is a fundamental tool when one is interested in logic, types and
the theory of

The course "Introduction to Functional programming using the OCaml
language" introduces gradually the central notions of functional
programming, via a set of video courses that are complemented by a rich set
of interesting exercises that you can perform fully in your browser.

This means one can start learning functional programming without any
hassle: nothing to install, nothing to tune up: the programming environment
is just one click away!

The course introduces the powerful mechanisms that allow to
build and manipulate complex data structures in a clean and efficient way.
And shows how functions play a central role, as first-class values
that can be freely used in any place where an expression can appear.

Registrations are already open at


The course will start on September 26th 2016, and will run for six weeks.

The expected effort is between 2 and 6 hours per week, depending on the
background, including the time spent watching the the short video sequences
of the course, that total approximately an hour per week.

This may seem a significant effort, but during the course one really
learns a lot: the final programming project will confirm that one hase
acquired a good mastery of functional programming and the ability
to develop medium sized programs with ease.

Thousands of learners attended the first run of this course that ended in
January 2016, and the many that completed it were extremely satisfied.

To introduce functional programming, we have chosen to use the
OCaml programming language. OCaml is a rich, elegant, efficient programming
language that reconciles the conciseness and flexibility of untyped
programming languages (like Python, for example) with the safety of
strongly typed programming languages (like Java, for example), and that has
a vibrant user community.

Facebook, Microsoft, JaneStreet, Bloomberg are some big names in industry
that adopted OCaml to develop cutting edge applications.  The research
community uses OCaml for writing tools like the proof assistant Coq, the
Coccinelle program transformer, the Frama-C code analyser, or the Astree
static analyser.  Several start ups use OCaml to obtain tenfold gains in
productivity and stability of their code base.

This course will be held in English, but subtitles are already available
both in English and in French.


To take full advantage of this course one should have already some basic
knowledge of computer programming, in particular one should already know
how to write simple computer programs in some programming language. For
instance, one should know concepts like variables (or identifiers),
functions (or procedures, methods), conditionals, and loops.

Michele Pagani
Institut de Recherche en Informatique Fondamentale
Universite Paris Diderot - Paris 7

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