DSL for UI using Scala Parser Combinators

Recently I had an opportunity to dwell into an interesting UI problem - with the proliferation of Single Page Application (SPA) as a design pattern for UI development, you sometimes end up with many screens that are not significantly different from each other. In this case the screens were web-forms. Most web-forms have a standard bunch of UI components - textbox's, textarea's, radio-button's, combo-box's et al. Instead of building each of these web-form's as a separate UI project the idea was to roll a DSL with 4 requirements -

Functional Conference - Random Notes

The first 'Functional Conference' happened in Bangalore between Oct 9-11. I had been keenly looking forward to it. This is a quick post on the sessions I attended and the conference itself. As the lineup of speakers and topics shaped up in the buildup to the conference on their website, it heightened my expectations. As a younger engineer I have gone through the cycle of expecting too much from conferences and thus not being able to learn sufficiently from that which was on offer. Time has had a mellowing effect... I find it much better to keep an open mind and try to absorb all that is on offer. And then, a little later, retain only that which is useful/pertinent. With that mindset and approach I found 'Functional Conference' a very fulfilling technology experience - plenty of technical richness to absorb and sufficient ideas to retain for long.

Experiments with XML XPath libraries on JVM

These days I mostly program in Scala. Few weeks ago I ran into a problem to search for data within fairly large XMLs. XPath and XQuery are the standard technologies to query XML's. JVM programmers have a choice of multiple libraries to choose from when it comes to XPath. One constraint in my problem was that the program to crunch these XML was a long-running one. So, apart from trying to make the search fast I had to make sure that the CPU/memory requirements were sane. On submitting a XPath search if a library forked many hundred threads, broke the XML into many hundred stubs thus consuming every single ounce of CPU/RAM at disposal on my machine, then it was simply a no-go. Even if such a library turned out to be an order of magnitude faster than the rest.

Running Machine-Learning Assignments on my Laptop's Spark Cluster

The latest offering of Coursera's popular course on Machine Learning by Andrew Ng started in the first week of March. The course requires Matlab's Octave to be used to solve the assignments. Apart from trying to solve the problems in Octave, I decided to solve the assignments in the programming language of my choice - Scala. This is a quick post on the why's and the how's.

Code Retreat

Last Saturday I happened to go to my first code retreat. Hosted by Multunus and conducted by the master programmer Venkat Subramaniam, it was a very learnful experience. Here's a sneak-peek of the event from my eyes.

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