Fixpoints and the Y combinator

What’s a Fixpoint? For some reason, functional programming seems to have developed a reputation for using confusing and/or complex names to describe various concepts. I recall this being more or less my impression as I transitioned from the “standard” OOP+imperative style into functional programming, so I’d like to start dispelling some of the confusion. This piece will talk through one of the basic, albeit more obscure, building blocks for functional programming that was a bit intimidating upon my first contact with it.

Sun Mar 10, 2019 1042 words
Introduction to Untyped Lambda Calculus

A few weeks ago I gave a talk at work about Lambda Calculus. I had intended to speak only about the Y-combinator (post about that is forthcoming), but ended up spending two-thirds of my time rushing through an explanation of the untyped Lambda Calculus. Afterwards a few teammates suggested that the material in that talk would be better served with a blog post, so here we are. The untyped lambda calculus isn’t particularly useful for day-to-day programming unless you happen to work in language design, but its fascinating and well worth a trip down the rabbit hole.

Sat Nov 10, 2018 2258 words