Sunday, August 15, 2010

How programming languages affect thinking; Clojure at work; my Clojure wrapper for PowerLoom

The Sapir-Whorf hypothesis is that the human language that we think in and communicate with affects our thought processes: the way we think.

Because my current job mostly uses the Clojure programming language, I have been thinking in Clojure idioms lately - a big change from Java and a smaller but still significant change to using Ruby. (BTW, you may have noticed that I don't blog here anymore about Ruby; this is because I have a dedicated Ruby blog now.)

At work Clojure has been a good choice because it is concise, has well designed APIs (for example, most built in data structures support the seq uniform APIs: everything mostly works the same for lists, sequences, binary trees, maps, etc.), and can take advantage available Java libraries. As a personal project, I finished wrapping the PowerLoom knowledge representation and reasoning system in a thin Clojure library this morning. (See my Clojure blog for more information.)

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