Online lecture downloads hit a quarter of a million

Online lecture downloads hit a quarter of a million

PA 290/09

A computer science textbook from The University of Nottingham has been turned into a hugely popular online lecture series that has exceeded 250,000 downloads in its first five weeks.

Dr Graham Hutton, a Reader in Computer Science and co-leader of the Functional Programming Research Group in the University’s School of Computer Science, has published a textbook on the novel programming language Haskell. Dr Hutton’s best-selling book is used for teaching courses at Nottingham and many other universities worldwide.

Now, in response to growing interest in Haskell within the software industry, a weekly series of video lectures based on Dr Hutton’s book is currently being delivered by Microsoft programming language designer Dr Erik Meijer. This started in October 2009.

Using Dr Hutton’s teaching materials for the book, these lectures are proving hugely popular — they have already been downloaded over a quarter of a million times in just over one month.

Dr Hutton said: “I’m delighted to see the textbook and course that I developed in Nottingham reaching such a vast audience on the web via Microsoft’s lecture series.”

He added: “I’m sure it will be great motivation for our students to know that so many people are interested in the material they are being taught here.”

Microsoft’s Dr Meijer added: “As contemporary languages such as C#, Visual Basic, F#, Scala, etc are incorporating more and more concepts from programming language research, the functional programming style has become mainstream. As a result, programmers are hungry to learn more about the foundations of functional programming.

“The purely functional language Haskell is the best medium to teach those fundamentals, and Dr Hutton’s textbook is the best way to learn about Haskell.”

Further details about the lecture series are available from: www.cs.nott.ac.uk/~gmh/book.html


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