[plt-scheme] [REMINDER] Boston Lisp Meeting: Monday 2010-02-22 Adam Chlipala on A Sane Approach to Modern Web Application Development

From: Francois-Rene Rideau (fare at tunes.org)
Date: Sat Feb 13 14:02:52 EST 2010

                             Boston Lisp Meeting:
                               Monday 2010-02-22
    Adam Chlipala on A Sane Approach to Modern Web Application Development


A Boston Lisp Meeting will take place on Monday, February 22nd 2010 at 1800 at
Harvard Pierce 209. Adam Chlipala will speak about A Sane Approach to Modern
Web Application Development.

Additionally, we will have two 5-minute Lightning Talks, each followed by
2-minute Q&A. Speakers to be announced.

Note that lacking a sponsor at this point, no buffet will be offered after the

1 Adam Chlipala on A Sane Approach to Modern Web Application Development

Most web applications today are programmed with tools that feel in this domain
as assembly language feels in many traditional domains; everything is a string,
or at best a globally-accessible (and mutable!) document tree. Some recent
language designs improve the situation, including explicit handling of key
entities like page generators and database tables, with language-level
detection of violations of the proper protocols for using these entities. I
claim we should go even further and provide opportunities for encapsulation of
web application components. Just as we are used to building encapsulated data
structure implementations, we should be able to encapsulate entire ``sub-webs´´
of applications, possibly parametrized by additional data and code, and with
the ability to ``own´´ and enforce access control on cookies, subtrees of a web
page's structure, etc. Further, within a statically-typed setting, it should be
possible to implement (safely) the metaprogramming patterns that have become
the standard in mainstream web frameworks; we should be able to generate
sub-webs specialized to database schemas, choices of form fields, etc., and the
compiler should tell us that the generator always produces valid code. In this
talk, I will present the Ur/Web domain-specific programming language, which
satisfies both of these requirements, in addition to offering compatibility
with buzzwords like ``AJAX´´ and ``Comet.´´

Adam Chlipala is currently a postdoc in computer science at Harvard University.
His research interests are in applications of advanced type systems, including
mechanized theorem-proving and the design and implementation of functional
programming languages. He finished his PhD at Berkeley in 2007, with a thesis
on verifying compilers and program analysis tools in the Coq computer proof
assistant. At Harvard, he is continuing work on compiler verification, and he
led a reimplementation of the Ynot library for Coq, which adds support for the
construction and mostly-automated verification of higher-order, imperative
programs, via separation logic. He also has a longstanding interest in tool
support for web programming, and he is now developing a commercial web site (to
be made public Real Soon Now) using his Ur/Web language for safe
metaprogramming of AJAX applications.

2 Lightning Talks

At every meeting, before the main talk, there are two slots for strictly timed
5-minute "Lightning Talks" followed by 2 minutes for questions and answers.

The slots for next meeting are still open. Step up and come talk about your pet
project! Contact me at fare at tunes.org.

3 Time and Location

The Lisp Meeting will take place on Monday, February 22nd 2010 at 1800 (6pm) at
Harvard Pierce 209.

Note that it's a new location.

This is at Harvard University, in the Pierce building, part of the SEAS
department. The nearest T stop is Harvard Square station on the Red Line. We
suggest you enter Pierce Hall from Oxford Street. The entrance is the one on
the right, and it has ``Pierce Hall´´ written above it. From there, you go up
the stairs one level and arrive almost directly outside Pierce 209, the meeting
room. Beware that the building normally closes at 6pm (time that the meeting
begins) though we'll try to leave that particular entrance open for

SEAS maps and direction:

Many thanks go to Adam Chlipala for arranging for the room, and to Harvard
University for welcoming us.

4 No Dinner

We haven't been able to renew sponsorship from our usual partners for 2010, and
are not planning to have after-meeting buffet anymore at this point. A group
will probably form to have dinner somewhere around Harvard Square.

5 More about the Meeting

The previous Boston Lisp Meeting on Monday, January 25th 2010 had about 20
participants. Ryan Culpepper spoke about PLT Scheme Macros. http://

We're always looking for more speakers. The call for speakers and all the other
details are at: http://fare.livejournal.com/120393.html Volunteers to give
Lightning Talks are also sought. http://fare.livejournal.com/143723.html

For more information, see our web site http://boston-lisp.org/ For posts
related to the Boston Lisp meetings in general, follow this link: http://
fare.livejournal.com/tag/boston-lisp-meeting or subscribe to our RSS feed:

Please forward this information to people you think would be interested. Please
accept my apologies for your receiving this message multiple times. My
apologies if this announce gets posted to a list where it shouldn't, or fails
to get posted to a list where it should. Feedback welcome by private email
reply to fare at tunes.org.

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