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Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Functional Language Expert to Speak at KU

Published on September 16th, 2010 by Michelle Ward

Simon Thompson, a professor of Logic and Computation at the University of Kent, will discuss the refactoring tool, Wrangler, that he created for the Erlang programming language at 1 p.m. on Monday, September 27, in the Apollo Room in Nichols Hall. Thompson’s talk, “Improving your Erlang programs and tests with Wrangler,” is free and open to the public.

Improving the design of a program without changing its behavior-known as refactoring-is critical to development. Wrangler allows much more efficient and reliable interactive refactoring of Erlang programs. Currently, it supports a small number of basic Erlang refactorings, including renaming of variables, functions and modules. Embedded in the Emacs editing environment, Wrangler uses functionalities provided by Distel to manage the communication between tools and Emacs.

An expert on functional languages, Thompson focuses on program verification, type systems, and software tools for functional programming languages. His team has built the HaRe tool for refactoring Haskell programs and is developing Wrangler to do the same for Erlang. Thompson has an MA in Mathematics from Cambridge University and a D.Phil. in mathematical logic from Oxford University.