Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Microsoft moves on F# functional language

Microsoft plans to integrate F#, a functional programming language developed by the Microsoft Research group, into its Visual Studio application development platform, said S. “Soma” Somasegar, corporate vice president of the Microsoft Developer Division, in his blog.

The company, however, has not laid out a formal release schedule, although Somasegar pledged to both integrate F# into Visual Studio and continue evolving it.

Pronounced “F sharp,” F# is based on the concepts of functional programming, Somasegar said. Functional languages treat computation as the evaluation of mathematical functions. The mathematical slant of functional programming is appealing to professionals in domains described with mathematical notation, including financial, scientific, and technical computing, said Somasegar.

F# combines type safety, performance, and scripting with the advantages of running on a on a modern runtime, Microsoft Research said. It supports interactive scripting like Python and the strong type inference and safety of ML. F# can access.Net libraries and database tools.

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