The Oregon Programming Languages Summer School is devoted to teaching the principles of programming languages to students and professionals. Although the topics vary from year to year, the unifying theme is the importance of fundamental theory to the design and implementation of programming languages, the development of program verification tools, and the application of advanced programming languages to practice. The summer school attracts participants from around the world, and is often able to subsidize the participation of qualified attendees with limited resources. More than a thousand participants have attended OPLSS since its inception in 2002. The summer school is sponsored by the National Science Foundation, and by generous grants from numerous companies over the years.
This year's program is entitled Concurrency and Parallelism, and is co-organized by Guy Blelloch. Parallelism and concurrency are central issues in programming, and enjoy richly developed theoretical foundations that are directly applicable to programming practice. The two topics are closely related, but it is helpful to distinguish their separate purposes as well as consider their close relation to each other. Parallelism is principally concerned with efficiency, making programs run faster by taking advantage of multiple processing elements. Making parallelism practical requires fundamental theories of cost semantics and parallel algorithms, and requires the development of sophisticated compilers and run-time systems. Concurrency is principally concerned with program composition, building a composite system from components that execute independently and interact with one another. There is much active research on the design and semantics of concurrent programming languages, and on the development of verification tools to ensure their correctness. This year's speakers will address many of these topics from various perspectives.
The main program takes place over two weeks, with ample time for group and private study, and to take advantage of the many recreational opportunities around Eugene. For the first time this year there will be an additional week at the start for teaching the basics of programming language theory to students with little or no prior experience.
The OPLSS logo was designed by Alisa Kwok to whom we are grateful for her skillful work.