A Taste of Programming with SICP JS

Tuesday, January 18, 2022 at 10:00am to 12:00pm

With visiting professor Martin Henz. We can understand some computer programs in the way we solve math equations: by performing one simple algebraic step after another, until we reach an answer. This Independent Activity introduces programming in this way, inspired by the first chapter of Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs, JavaScript edition (SICP JS). We start from first principles, by looking at functions that you know from mathematics, but before long, you will program interesting graphics and sound patterns using the Source Academy, a website built for SICP JS. The Activity offers entertaining and thought-provoking insights into the essence of computation, and at the same time an introduction to programming using the popular programming language JavaScript.


Day 1: The elements: See the basic ingredients of all computer programs
Day 2: A picture language: Program graphical patterns by wishful thinking
Day 3: Functions: Experience the magic of higher-order programming
Day 4: A curve language: Program fractals and three-dimensional curves with functions
Day 5: The lambda calculus: Explore the essence of computation
Day 6: Functional sound processing: Make some noise

For more details and to register see https://www.eecs.mit.edu/academics/iap-offerings/iap-2022/.

Event Type


Events By Interest

Academic, IAP (Independent Activities Period), General

Events By Audience

MIT Community, Students

Events By School

Schwarzman College of Computing


IAP, computation



Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL)
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