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What Functional Programming Can Do for FreeBSD and Vice Versa?

Gábor János Páli
Author Description:
A former game engine programmer and a freelance special translator of English and Hungarian in Informatics and Mathematics. Graduated at the University of Debrecen majoring in Computer Science with minor in Special Translation. As member of Department of Programming Languages and Compilers at Eötvös Lóránd University, and doctorate student for Universitatea Babeş-Bolyai, he is mainly interested in the declarative programming approach, contemporary functional programming (especially in Feldspar and Haskell, sometimes F# or Clean) and quality software. Professional interests also include (lightweight) documentation engineering and typography, software localization, portability issues, UNIX system administration, operating systems, and systems programming.

He is a member of the FreeBSD Project since April 2008, and he is an active committer to the doc/www and ports/ repositories, and a Google Summer of Code 2009 alumnus in the src/ area.

Functional programming is clearly an emerging programming paradigm with full of new and surprising ideas waiting for to be applied in development of operating systems. The higher level of abstraction helps the programmer to directly focus on the problem to be solved, while there are many known techniques to make it very efficient when running on hardware. Haskell, one of the most successful functional programming languages of today is centered around a BSD-licensed open source project with a very good community, support for many platforms, and strong research background. Recently we formed the FreeBSD Haskell Team in order to bring the most out of Haskell on FreeBSD and FreeBSD on Haskell. We would like to share our experiences earned in adapting FreeBSD as a host for software development in Haskell, and propose some ideas on how these projects could help each other in the future.
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