Data61 opens functional programming lab in Qld

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Friday, 14 July, 2017

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CSIRO’s Data61 has opened its newest office in Queensland, including Australia’s first functional programming open lab (FPOL).

The new office and laboratory have been opened at Queensland government-supported innovation hub The Precinct.

Data61 aims to use the facility to grow Australia’s functional programming capabilities, sharing its expertise in data analytics with government, industry and businesses. Five new software engineers have been employed by the open lab and another five will be recruited towards the end of the year.

Data61 CEO Adrian Turner said functional programming will improve coding for large-scale classes of applications that need to perform concurrent operations.

“It can be applied to many things, ranging from financial markets to coding for fully autonomous aerial vehicles,” he said.

“Many Australian IT firms know that functional programming will benefit their business, but they are not sure how to acquire the necessary skills. We want to help change that.

“Investing in this collaboration with the Queensland government is right in line with Data61’s mission to lead in creating Australia’s data-driven future by seeding new industries and helping to scale existing ones.”

Establishment of the lab forms part of the $17.1 million jointly funded Strategic Partnership Agreement (SPA) with the Queensland government.

Other initiatives under the SPA will include two Advance Queensland-funded mid-career research fellowships to support activities with the government. Advance Queensland is a $420 million whole-of-government initiative seeking to improve the economy through innovation.

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