You are previewing Functional Programming in C#: Classic Programming Techniques for Modern Projects.

Functional Programming in C#: Classic Programming Techniques for Modern Projects

  1. Cover
  2. Title
  3. Copyright
  4. About the Author
  5. Credits
  6. Contents
  7. Introduction
  8. Part I : Introduction to Functional Programming
    1. Chapter 1 : A Look at Functional Programming History
      1. What Is Functional Programming?
      2. Functional Languages
      3. The Relationship to Object Oriented Programming
      4. Summary
    2. Chapter 2 : Putting Functional Programming into a Modern Context
      1. Managing Side Effects
      2. Agile Programming Methodologies
      3. Declarative Programming
      4. Functional Programming Is a Mindset
      5. Is Functional Programming in C# a Good Idea?
      6. Summary
  9. Part II : C# Foundations of Functional Programming
    1. Chapter 3 : Functions, Delegates, and Lambda Expressions
      1. Functions and Methods
      2. Reusing Functions
      3. Anonymous Functions and Lambda Expressions
      4. Extension Methods
      5. Referential Transparency
      6. Summary
    2. Chapter 4 : Flexible Typing with Generics
      1. Generic Functions
      2. Generic Classes
      3. Constraining Types
      4. Other Generic Types
      5. Covariance and Contravariance
      6. Summary
    3. Chapter 5 : Lazy Listing with Iterators
      1. The Meaning of Laziness
      2. Enumerating Things with .NET
      3. Implementing Iterator Functions
      4. Chaining Iterators
      5. Summary
    4. Chapter 6 : Encapsulating Data in Closures
      1. Constructing Functions Dynamically
      2. The Problem with Scope
      3. How Closures Work
      4. Summary
    5. Chapter 7 : Code Is Data
      1. Expression Trees in .NET
      2. Analyzing Expressions
      3. Generating Expressions
      4. .NET 4.0 Specifics
      5. Summary
  10. Part III : Implementing Well-known Functional Techniques in C#
    1. Chapter 8 : Currying and Partial Application
      1. Decoupling Parameters
      2. Calling Parts of Functions
      3. Why Parameter Order Matters
      4. Summary
    2. Chapter 9 : Lazy Evaluation
      1. What’s Good about Being Lazy?
      2. Passing Functions
      3. Explicit Lazy Evaluation
      4. Comparing the Lazy Evaluation Techniques
      5. How Lazy Can You Be?
      6. Summary
    3. Chapter 10 : Caching Techniques
      1. The Need to Remember
      2. Precomputation
      3. Memoization
      4. Summary
    4. Chapter 11 : Calling Yourself
      1. Recursion in C#
      2. Tail Recursion
      3. Accumulator Passing Style
      4. Continuation Passing Style
      5. Indirect Recursion
      6. Summary
    5. Chapter 12 : Standard Higher Order Functions
      1. Applying Operations: Map
      2. Map, Filter, and Fold in LINQ
      3. Standard Higher Order Functions
      4. Summary
    6. Chapter 13 : Sequences
      1. Understanding List Comprehensions
      2. A Functional Approach to Iterators
      3. Ranges
      4. Restrictions
      5. Summary
    7. Chapter 14 : Constructing Functions from Functions
      1. Composing Functions
      2. Advanced Partial Application
      3. Combining Approaches
      4. Summary
    8. Chapter 15 : Optional Values
      1. The Meaning of Nothing
      2. Implementing Option(al) Values
      3. Summary
    9. Chapter 16 : Keeping Data from Changing
      1. Change Is Good — not!
      2. False Assumptions
      3. Implementing Immutable Container Data Structures
      4. Alternatives to Persistent Data Types
      5. Summary
    10. Chapter 17 : Monads
      1. What’s in a Typeclass?
      2. What’s in a Monad?
      3. Why Do a Whole Abstraction?
      4. A Second Monad: Logging
      5. Syntactic Sugar
      6. Binding with SelectMany?
      7. Summary
  11. Part IV : Putting Functional Programming into Action
    1. Chapter 18 : Integrating Functional Programming Approaches
      1. Refactoring
      2. Writing New Code
      3. Finding Likely Candidates for Functional Programming
      4. Summary
    2. Chapter 19 : The MapReduce Pattern
      1. Implementing MapReduce
      2. Abstracting the Problem
      3. Summary
    3. Chapter 20 : Applied Functional Modularization
      1. Executing SQL Code from an Application
      2. Rewriting the Function with Partial Application and Precomputation in Mind
      3. Summary
    4. Chapter 21 : Existing Projects Using Functional Techniques
      1. The .NET Framework
      2. LINQ
      3. Google MapReduce and Its Implementations
      4. NUnit
      5. Summary
  12. Index
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FUNCTIONS AND METHODS

C# is an object oriented language. Not just that, it’s a comparatively pure object oriented language. The degree of object orientation can’t really be measured, but different programming languages adhere to the ideas of certain programming philosophies to a certain extent, and rarely do they go all the way. In this case the interesting point is that C# doesn’t allow any functions outside of classes. This is a big difference compared to C++ — the first object oriented programming language for many “mainstream” programmers — which allows functions to live outside of classes, mainly for backward compatibility with C code. It can be argued that since C# supports classes with static members, and even fully static classes are supported since version 3.0, imperative code is simply hidden behind object oriented terminology as needed. However, looking at the understanding of C# evident with the majority of programmers, the C# design team succeeded in creating a perception of an almost purely object oriented language.

Because functions in C# can only exist within classes, they are typically called methods. Methods can accept a number of parameters, and they can have a return value. Some people might argue that they always have a return value, but the return value can be of type void, which basically means that the method doesn’t return anything. Just in case you haven’t ever seen a C# method before, here’s one:

class MyClass {

  int Square(int x) {

    return x * x; ...

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