[Haskell-cafe] why are trading/banking industries seriously adopting FPLs???

Ketil Malde ketil at malde.org
Fri Mar 25 09:35:37 CET 2011

"Vasili I. Galchin" <vigalchin at gmail.com> writes:

>      I am very curious about the readiness of trading and banking industries
> to adopt FPLs like Haskell:

Yes, I've noticed that, too.  And it goes both ways - it's an industry
of which the computer science crowd tends to be unaware as well.

Some hypotheses, off the top of my head, and with no particular
knowledge about the industry as such:

* The financial business is very competitive, and a small advantage
  (like making a transaction a minute before your competitors) makes a
  big difference.   In a more conservative industry, nobody got fired for
  buying IBM.

* The financial business are developing mathematical models which map
  more easily to functional languages.  (And have math-savvy people
  who are able to understand them).  OTOH, engineers ought to understand
  math, too.

* Culturally, engineers tend to hire people like themselves, which
  imposes a lot of inertia.  Perhaps the financials have a more
  enlightened world view?

* Mistakes are very expensive, and financials thus value correctness
  more than other industries, since actual money is at stake, not just
  less tangible values like customer relations (which can be remedied by
  other means).

* Trends - perhaps an institution is doing particularly well, and
  it incidentally is using an FPL.  The financial sector being no 
  smarter than other sectors, other businesses might pick up FPLs for
  what is basically cargo-cult reasons.

* Financials have the financial elbowroom to pay high salaries.  Thus
  they get smarter people, who as we all know are more likely to choose
  functional languages.

If I haven't seen further, it is by standing in the footprints of giants

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