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Types and Programming Languages

4.23 of 5 stars 4.23  ·  rating details  ·  191 ratings  ·  12 reviews
A type system is a syntactic method for automatically checking the absence of certain erroneous behaviors by classifying program phrases according to the kinds of values they compute. The study of type systems--and of programming languages from a type-theoretic perspective -- -has important applications in software engineering, language design, high-performance compilers,...more
Hardcover, 623 pages
Published January 4th 2002 by MIT Press (MA) (first published 2002)
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Leo Horovitz
After spending years on my shelf and having been partially read at least once before, this book was finally finished! (I don't know why I used the passive form there, it just felt right for some reason)

I'm glad I did finally read it, even though there were parts that were glanced through without too much attention to detail and even though I skipped the exercises that are probably needed to get a more thorough understanding of the material. I read it mostly as a way to get a good overview of the...more
May 17, 2007 Sam marked it as to-read
Recommends it for: Any programmer interested in writing their own programming language(s)
Perhaps the best book of its kind for the beginning/intermediate programmer interested in PLT (programming language theory). The book covers the simple untyped lambda calculus and builds on that foundation to many typed lambda calculi. Implementation chapters show the reader how to put the information to good use, providing executable code in the O'Caml language.

As a non-mathematician, programming hobbyist without formal experience or training, I've found this book particularly helpful in follow...more
Zhi Han
One of my most unpleasant experience in grad school is when I has absolutely no idea what his peers are talking about. I frequently found myself in that situation during my years at CMU. Type theory is one of the topics. Why didn’t I just ask them? I did. My friend Oliver once gave me the perfect response: “I cannot afford to spend time on educating you.” In a world full of distractions and useless information, time is very valuable resource. If one wants to learn, he has to spend his own time

Eric Walkingshaw
An invaluable reference for programming language theory. Especially useful for those interested in functional languages, which seem to be poorly covered elsewhere. This book works in the opposite direction as most, assuming a functional approach and eventually deriving imperative constructs, rather than the other way around. I like this much better, but it may be tough if you lack the functional background.

One thing I've noticed is that people seem to get hung up over the notation and liberal u...more
Jyri-matti Lähteenmäki
I doubt that I would have gotten total understanding even if I hade made the exercises, but still, I got a lot of understanding about type systems and the kind of things there are to consider.
I liked the structure: starting simple, explaining things clearly, and building slowly.

Don't attempt to read this book without at least a basic knowledge of doing proofs in math and higher-order logic. This should cover you: Language, Proof and Logic: Text and CD

As you work on implementing your own type systems, you'll find the detailed metatheory chapters worth revisiting.
very dense and theory heavy. but interesting, none the less.
Scott Wisniewski
Awesome book, particularly if you like programming languages.

Also, the proof exercises are good at training your brain for combinatorial reasoning. It helps to makes reasoning about programing languages intuitive.

I loved this book.
A classic in Type Theory, it gives you background in something modern programmers are woefully and shamefully ignorant in.
Aug 28, 2008 Scott rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: computer scientists
An absolute necessity for anyone wanting to learn the theoretical underpinnings of programming languages.
A canonical tome. If you're writing a type system, read this.
Sonny Ny
Dec 11, 2008 Sonny Ny marked it as to-read
Brian Goetz's favorite CS book -
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