All Programming Language Suck? Just Build Your Own! – Language-Oriented Programming with Racket
2020-12-27, 16:00–17:00, ChaosZone TV Stream

All languages have warts, wats, defects, and things that are just plain bad taste. Unless, of course, it's your language. Usually, implementing and maintaining your own language is a lot of work, but the Racket programming system makes creating a language as easy as having breakfast (almost) and thus a routine activity. Pick and assemble what you like from other languages, sprinkle your own favorite features, and voila - there's your fun experiment, your medium of expression, your educational language, your DSL.


Racket's secret is its flexible syntax (hailing from Lisp), and its world-class macro system which is both super-powerful and easy to learn and use. (Going far beyond classic Lisp.) What's great is that you don't have to do all the work: Languages are just libraries of macros in Racket, and they can seamlessly interoperate with the Racket base language and each other. Don't worry if you dislike parentheses: Racket has you covered there, too.

Michael Sperber is CEO of Active Group in Tübingen, Germany. He has
been developing software since 1984, and taught programming courses
since 1987. Mike specializes in functional programming, with many
publications and several books under his belt. Mike maintains a
strong interest in teaching programming, and has designed introductory
courses for several German universities. He is co-organizer of the
annual BOB developer conference.

Mike's first programming experiences were in the local department
store, and his formative learning experiences were all shaped by the
hacker culture of the 1980s. Since then, he was a university
researcher and educator (and researcher on education), a freelance
developer, and finally a CEO. He has continuously taught programming
in high schools, universities, to kids, and as commercial training.
He's observed the effects of hacker culture and education in many
industrial projects.