Functional programming is a paradigm that focuses on functions instead of objects. It operates by composing together mathematical formulas. Although the concept is rather complicated to tackle if you don’t have much coding experience, it’s ideal for developing clear code and superb clear for testing.
In this article, we’ll try to explain what functional programming is, why it matters, and what coding languages are the best for large projects. This way, you can better understand why the leading companies, like FB, NASO, Siemens, and Tezos, implement it in their projects.
Story Behind Functional Programming
The history of the concept dates back to Turing machines. Turing machines are a mathematical model of computation used to prove theorems about computation to this day. It originated from lambda calculus – a system first introduced to the public in the 1930s.
If math shouldn’t be a hard nut to crack, the functional method will be just a beautiful dream for you. It’s simple and easy to implement. It treats mathematical functions as they are. This means when you need to integrate the function into your code, you simply add it with very little care about syntax specifics.
Data and functions are immutable. It means whatever input you write, you get the same output with no side effects, and it’s called a pure function or purity. Generally speaking, functional programming (FP) lets the software engineer think about logical solutions for the assigned problem, and as it’s done, elegantly turns it into a function.
Why does it matter?
The model is based on a few primary concepts:
- Immutable data types, which enables you to avoid lots of errors with mutation of variables.
- Referential transparency and mathematical clarity of solution.
Functional Programming Languages to Incorporate into Your Business
Having a highly skilled and trained full-stack developers’ team is essential these days. Without talented programmers who can implement the model, it is difficult to realize complex systems and thereby enhance your business. Whether you’re looking to expand your team with skilled professionals or want to understand better what it takes to master the paradigm, here are the five most commonly used functional code languages.
Haskell Programming Language
Haskell was developed back in 1990 when the community faced inefficiencies with other languages and lacked one system to gather everyone to use and master it. At that time, many new languages entered the field, but most of them were quite similar, while at the same time, they couldn’t provide a decent application development foundation.
Since then, the Haskell language has been rapidly established in the field and helped build myriads of programming projects. It’s distinguished with its purity because it doesn’t allow side effects and mutilations. Due to its immutability, it’s easier to code using Haskell and avoid bugs and common interferences. You could also call Haskell one of the neatest programming languages because you always get the expected result because of the way you write a function.
Functional Programming Python
The language was introduced to the public in the same year as Haskell, but it had a bigger target. It immediately reached its audience, and although Python is rather a universal coding language, it’s mostly used by data scientists and experts in financial sectors.
Another benefit of Python is that it’s the most widely used language in the world. If you want to learn it, you can find numerous online resources and information to get you started. Or, if you’re looking for experienced programmers, the talent pool is relatively large compared with other languages.
Clojure Programming Language
Clojure has immutability. It can be written in the Java platform, and the system recognizes Java libraries. These features make the language very dynamic while at the same time specific and straightforward.
Now, you should have a better idea of what the paradigm is. To get you started, it’s necessary to understand how the concept can benefit your business and choose this coding paradigm instead of others.
- The main perk is a clear and straightforward functional programming nature. It helps to eliminate problems and errors.
- Testing made easy. Functional code is a useful solution to avoid bugs and system interferences, while at the same time, it makes it easier to conduct unit testings.
- Straightforward code increases execution time, and due to fewer chances of mistakes and alterations, developers can carry out projects faster.
- It offers a broad choice of coding languages, including the most commonly used in private and commercial sectors.
- Can use Nested functions.
The list could go further, but you get the main idea. However, as much as functional programming is a practical solution for growing your company’s projects, it has a few limitations you should keep in mind, too.
Difficult to learn. Yes, it is really true. Perhaps, starting with functional programming is too ambitious. This paradigm requires a comprehensive understanding of computer science and a higher level of mathematical knowledge. As become a good programmer in object-oriented languages is possible without in-depth mathematical knowledge, but to be a good Haskeller is just nonsense.