Great Works (Spring 2024)

Time: Fridays 10:10am - 11:00am
Location: Gates 310 (Zoom link sent via Slack channel)
Organizers: Yulun Yao and Jialu Bao

This is a 1-credit seminar that meets every week to discuss classic papers in programming languages adjacent fields. Great works is a discussion-focused reading group. We expect participants to read the papers and attend the seminar.

Reading Protocol

Our primary means of communication is through slack: Cornell CIS #great-pl

Please also join the PLDG mailing list:

To join, send a message to with the subject “join” and a blank body.

Presenting Papers

This seminar has two parts — a presentation that familiarize people with the topic and help them with paper reading, and a discussion in the subsequent week with the expectation that people have a good understanding of the paper. Aim for 20-25 minutes for your presentation, and 25-30 minutes discussion (prepare questions and slides).

Getting Papers

An up-to-date schedule and paper list is here. You can fill in your name in the empty block to claim a presentation slot.

Paper titles are hyperlinked to PDFs available on the web. If a link is broken, open an issue at the Github repo for this website, or find a working link and make a pull request.

Date Topic Presenter Mentor
02/02 Hints on Programming Languages Design Yulun Yao
02/09 Rise of Worse is Better & Growing a Language Jialu Bao
02/16 Call-by-name, call-by-value, and the λ-calculus TBA
02/23 Kleene Algebra with Tests Kei Imada
03/01 The next 700 programming languages Hongzheng Chen
03/08 Why Functional Programming Matters TBA Jialu Bao
03/15 Types, Abstraction, and Parametric Polymorphism Stephanie Ma
03/22 Using Dependent Types to Express Modular Structure TBA
03/29 Introduction to the Calculus of Inductive Constructions TBA Ariel Kellison
04/05 Spring Break
04/12 Formal Verification of a Realistic Compiler TBA Ariel Kellison
04/19 Systematic Design of Program Analysis Frameworks TBA
04/26 A Probabilistic PDL Vivian Ding Jialu Bao
05/02 Computational lambda-calculus and monads & Handling Algebraic Effects TBA Ariel Kellison