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SkillsCast

Types All The Way Down

6th October 2016 in London at CodeNode

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In web development, a great deal of effort is spent on consistency. The frontend, backend and database must all agree on a data-model, and if they don’t, the system crashes spectacularly.

The default solutions are either to invest heavily in hand-written integration tests, or use JavaScript everywhere. Neither of these are ideal. However there is a compelling alternative - use the same types everywhere. By reusing strong, static types across tiers, you can make guarantees about the consistency of the entire system, and dramatically lower the cost of change.

In this talk, you will explore one approach that uses Haskell data types to drive a both a PostgreSQL database schema and a frontend system written in Elm. With one set of types to rule them all, whole system consistency is automatic and reliable, and the cost of changing types - and hence evolving the whole system’s data model - is dramatically reduced.

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Types All The Way Down

Kris Jenkins

Kris Jenkins is a successful startup cofounder, turned freelance functional programmer, and open-source enthusiast. He mostly works building systems in Elm, Haskell & Clojure, improving the world one project at a time.