F# (pronounced “eff sharp”) is multi-paradigm .NET programming language that supports both imperative object-oriented and functional programming styles. It’s a dialect of the ML programming language and very close to OCaml. Used as a functional programming language, F# gives you expressive power that’s tricky to duplicate in your run-of-the-mill imperative programming languages. As a .NET programming language, you can integrate modules written in F# into C# and Visual Basic projects, with F# doing the data-crunching, and C# or VB handling the user interface.
Justin Lee talked to me about starting a Toronto F# study group a couple of weeks ago at Toronto CodeCamp, and he’s holding the first meeting this Thursday, May 7th at 6:00 p.m. at the Dark Horse Cafe (215 Spadina Avenue). He says that in this first meeting, he wants to start talking about the study group itself and cover a few simple “getting started with F#” exercises.
There’s nothing like a taking up a new programming language to stretch your brain, and there’s a lot of evidence to suggest that functional programming concepts are the future. The F# Study Group is an opportunity to get started, and the Dark Horse is a pretty nice setting with great coffee.
Most career writers when they want to simplify a message use a fable, with a few illustrations that show the key perspectives. The fable is clearly secondary to the details.
In The Adventures of Johnny Bunko, the story is more interesting than the advice. Having read a lot of Mr. Pink’s writing, I thought I knew what he would probably advise. But I didn’t realize that he would make the story so interesting, and that the manga format would add so much power to the story telling. Nice work!
What’s the advice? Let me rephrase to make it clearer to you:
Don’t be rigid about planning out each step well in advance . . . it’s not possible to do.
Build on what you’re good at (Peter Drucker originated that one) and avoid relying on what you aren’t good at.
Focus on what you can do for others (start with the boss) rather than what’s in it for you (you can read more about this in How to Be a Star at Work).
Keep at it. Practice makes perfect.
Take on big challenges and learn from them.
Make a difference.
I think I’ll pick up this book — it’s pretty cheap, and I’d like to see how Daniel Pink uses the manga format to advantage.
More Advice from Daniel Pink
Here are some video clips featuring Daniel Pink some pretty interesting giving career advice…
Abundance, Asia and Automation
Pink says that the really useful skills are those that are hard to outsource, hard to automate and that serves a need that goes beyond functional. And those skills are the right-brain ones — the ones often derided as “soft skills”.
Help! My Resume Has Too Many Jobs!
Don’t worry if your resume looks like it has too many jobs on it — the world of work today doesn’t give out prizes for lifetime service. These days, it’s about whether you can solve their problems.
Exercise Creativity at Your Job
The old adage applies: “It’s often better to ask for forgiveness than permission.” And from my own experience, I can tell you that he’s right.
Choosing a Major
Follow your interests — don’t choose a major based on what kind of job you think you’ll get after you graduate. The job market is likely to change! Follow your passion instead. You should also work on your “high concept” and “high touch” skills.