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Foundations of Object-Oriented Languages: Types and Semantics
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He has also served as a visiting professor or scientist at the University of California at Santa Cruz, Princeton University, the Newton Institute at Cambridge University, the Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris, Stanford University, University of Pisa, and M.I.T. He has served as a consultant for Prime Computer, Digital Equipment Company (DEC), NEC Research Institute, and EcoNovo.
He received a B.A. from Pomona College in 1970, and M.A. (1972) and Ph.D. (1975) degrees from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, all in Mathematics with a specialty in mathematical logic and a minor field of Computer Science. Five years after receiving his Ph.D., he spent a year on leave at M.I.T. where he studied and began research in Computer Science. In 2004-2005, he spent a year at the University of California at Santa Cruz where he started studying a new field once again, this time linguistics.
His research program was originally in the model theory of languages with generalized quantifiers, but his interests turned to programming languages after his stay at M.I.T. His research focus evolved from models of the polymorphic lambda calculus to the study of semantics and type theory, as well as language design, especially of object-oriented languages. His research in computer science has been supported by many NSF (and other) research grants, and has resulted in many published papers in conferences and journals as well as numerous invited talks at conferences. He also co-founded and obtained NSF funding to establish the series of International Workshops on Foundations of Object-Oriented Languages (FOOL), and served as its steering committee chair until 2001. He is currently working on research in linguistics to develop formal models of the context of a continuing dialog, with special interest in the interactions between participants and how the context is built as a conversation progresses.
He has a long-standing interest in Computer Science education. He played a major role in setting up the Computer Science major at Williams College and was the founding chair of the Computer Science Department there. He was one of the founding members of the Liberal Arts Computer Science Consortium, and has contributed to each of their three model curricula for liberal arts colleges. He was a member of the joint ACM - IEEE CS Joint Curriculum Task Force responsible for Curricula 1991 and contributed to Curricula 2001. He has also served on several ACM and IEEE task forces, most recently the ACM Java Task Force responsible for creating a Java library to be used in CS 1 courses. He has also served several times on the organizing committee for the series of workshops on Pedagogies and Tools for the Teaching and Learning of Object-Oriented Concepts. He has served on visiting committees for the computer science and/or math departments of more than 15 liberal arts colleges. In recognition of his work in Computer Science education, he was given the ACM SIGCSE 2005 award for Outstanding Contributions to Computer Science Education.
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The next brief section defines a mathematical notation, a lambda calculus, for discussing types. In this calculus, a "record" or "struct" keyword is an operator that aggregates other types together into a new unit, and C++ templates are functions that generate new types. This calculus feeds into a formal logic that proves statements about types the same way standard arithmetic proves statements about numbers.
This isn't nearly as daunting as a normal proof of program correctness, by the way. Behavioral correctness deals with a program's changes of state over time; this treats the program as a static, compile-time entity.Read more ›