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FP84 is an extension of John Backus' FP programming language to include infinite sequences, programmer-defined combining forms (analogous to those that Backus himself added to FL, his successor to FP), and lazy evaluation.

Unlike FFP, another one of Backus' own variations on FP, FP84 makes a clear distinction between objects and functions: i.e., the latter are no longer represented by sequences of the former.

FP84's extensions are accomplished by removing the FP restriction that sequence construction be applied only to non-⊥ objects: in FP84 the entire universe of expressions (including those whose meaning is ⊥) is closed under sequence construction.

FP84's semantics is embodied in an underlying algebra of programs, this is, a set of function-level equalities that may be used to manipulate and to reason about programs.


  • Sacrificing simplicity for convenience: Where do you draw the line?, John H. Williams and Edward L. Wimmers, IBM Almaden Research Center, Proceedings of the FIfteenth Annual ACM SIGACT-SIGPLAN Symposium on Principles of Programming Languages, San Diego, CA, January 1988.
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