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Coursera: Functional Programming Principles in Scala (free online course)

Tim Cooke
Bartender

Joined: Mar 28, 2008
Posts: 1003
    
  47

For those who have missed the previous runs of this excellent course. It's back, and has just started.

https://www.coursera.org/course/progfun

I know a few of the folks here at the Ranch have done this course too and I certainly found it to be very good indeed. Highly recommended if you want to learn a bit about Functional Programming and Scala.


Tim Driven Development
chris webster
Bartender

Joined: Mar 01, 2009
Posts: 1701
    
  14

+1 from me. This is an excellent course: challenging but very rewarding, and well worth exploring if you want to take advantage of the growing interest in FP and Scala in areas such as Big Data and concurrency/distributed processing, among many others.


No more Blub for me, thank you, Vicar.
Chan Ag
Bartender

Joined: Sep 06, 2012
Posts: 1017
    
  15
I'm doing this course. Done with the first sample assignment ( heck that recursive max function took me about half an hour and they said it was kind of a no-assignment ), and the last but two video lectures, I think the course is quite good. Only it takes me more time than what they mention in the website.

<Rant>
I have already spent about 4 hours on getting things working and on the lectures. I mean we don't do just the lectures right. We also explore things a little bit to familiarize ourselves with the way things work in the functional space. So I have two lectures and the first assignment still pending and today I've got office work to do. Given the complexity of the assignment that they referred to as just the example assignment, I think the first assignment is also going to be time consuming/complex. But I'm not going to give up too easily is my plan. Till now, that is.

Sometimes I wonder why the duration of the coursera courses has to be just a month and a half. Couldn't they have considered people who have a full time job and who have to work on weekends occasionally.
This is not a sustainable model really.
</Rant>

Let's see for how long I can keep up with the course flow. Sigh.
chris webster
Bartender

Joined: Mar 01, 2009
Posts: 1701
    
  14

Hi Chan

I agree, the course is hard work. When I did it, I found I was doing more like 7-10 hours per week, not the 5-7 hours they claimed it should take. Possibly one reason for the 6 week timetable was that we were doing it alongside regular students at EPFL, who were doing the online units as part of their degree studies, and presumably this course had to fit the timetable for their lectures etc. Not sure if this is still the case, so maybe they could extend the course timetable now e.g. by giving online students more time to complete the assignments. Why not ask about this on the course forum at Coursera?

The course forums were very helpful when I did the course, so be sure to make the most of them.

Finally, you might find SICP very helpful for some of the first assignments, and Odersky's book is also very useful for some of the later assignments.

Good luck - it's hard work but it's only 6 weeks!
Piet Souris
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 08, 2009
Posts: 544
    
  11
Hmmm... sounds promising.

"Thanks to" Tim I registered yesterday for this course, being curious to learn what this Scala
thing is all about. And Chan's post is very encouraging. Having myself a very busy full day
occupation and a family as well, I hope I can spare a couple of hours in the weekends.

But now, I just followed the introduction. So I've just downloaded and installed the sbt, next
I gonna download eclipse (I've always used NetBeans).

So, IIUC, I have until tomorrow evening to get the first assignment done and sent in? It
looks I'm in for some busy hours...

If I need any tips, I'll let you know.

Greetz,
Piet
Tim Cooke
Bartender

Joined: Mar 28, 2008
Posts: 1003
    
  47

Piet, first assignment is due in next week isn't it? Worth double checking before pulling an all nighter.
Piet Souris
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 08, 2009
Posts: 544
    
  11
hi Tim,

thanks for the info.

Yes, I've square ears at the moment listening to all the demo's, and I noticed
that the first assignment is due to May 11th. So, indeed, I can go to sleep before midnight ;)

But hooray! IIUC, I have to work with command line windows, with this sbt. Now what was
that 1930 dos command for changing to another folder? cd\? dir\p? OMG...

But first impression: a lot less verbose than Java! But it'll take some time getting used to.

Greetz,
Piet
Chan Ag
Bartender

Joined: Sep 06, 2012
Posts: 1017
    
  15
Hi Chris,

Thanks for responding.

I have just taken a brief look into the SICP book and it seems the entire content of the first week is from the first chapter of this book. :-)
I will surely go through a few chapters of this book sometime later.

Chan.





Sugantha Jeevankumar
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 06, 2007
Posts: 93
Hi Everyone

For those who missed the last session, a new session is scheduled to start on 15th of September, 2014. Hope you make the best use of it.

SCJP 5.0
 
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subject: Coursera: Functional Programming Principles in Scala (free online course)