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Programming today exhibits a voracious appetite for information, and one of the most important trends in languages today is to make access to data and services fluent and seamless. To help tame the data deluge, the F# team is working on a novel language and compiler extensibility mechanism, Type Providers.
Type Providers are a unique mechanism for applying the benefits of strong static typing to external, dynamic data sources. For example, Type Providers enable IDE support for “Intellisense”-style completion on dynamic data sources while exploring their APIs. When the code is compiled, programmers can then enjoy static typing against these data sources with a variety of options for code generation.
This talk will describe the foundations of Type Providers, their supporting F# language features and their benefits towards tooling. Relevant usage scenarios for Type Providers (such as data-oriented programming, application scripting and protection against spurious code generation) will also be discussed.
Joe Pamer is the Lead Developer for the F# team at Microsoft. He has been at Microsoft for six years, with much of that time having been spent on F#.