Parsers in Context
Our work on a parser combinator library has touched on many topics in computer science. In section we discuss them in a bit more detail and give pointers to resources that go further. I have two goals in doing this:
- to show how the ideas in this case study can be further developed;
- to show you that the academic literature in computer science can be approachable, interesting, and useful.
The second point is worth spending more time on. Becoming familiar with the academic literature is worthwhile for developing deep technical knowledge. It's very rare to tackle a problem that no-one has ever looked at before, and academia is often tackling issues that have yet to arise in industrial practice. I find scholar.google.com the easiest way to search the academic literature. It takes a bit of work to read papers. For example, functional programming papers often use Haskell, and there may be notation and terms you're not familiar with. I certainly don't understand everything of every paper I read. The concerns of academia are often different from the concerns of industry, so you may have to do a bit of translating to your context. I still find it worthwhile to stay in touch with research; there are many good ideas out there that can have impact in industrial contexts.