“Functional” Programming?

Many programming paradigms have come and gone. Is Functional Programming here to stay? Or is it just another fad?

Ilya Suzdalnitskiy
16 min readMay 29, 2021


Most things in the world of programming are simply tools. Programming languages are tools. Frameworks and libraries are tools. Even programming paradigms like Object Oriented Programming are also tools.

Functional Programming has been becoming more and more popular in the recent years. Where does it fit in the picture? Is it simply another tool, or something much bigger? Perhaps even a silver bullet that will solve all of our problems?

Let’s find out!

What is a silver bullet?

What is the definition of a silver bullet? It is something that can be used to solve all of our problems. Is mathematics a silver bullet? If anything, it comes very close to being a silver bullet.

We owe it to the thousands of extremely intelligent men and women who worked hard for millennia to give us mathematics. Euclid, Pythagoras, Archimedes, Isaac Newton, Leonhard Euler, Alonzo Church, and many many others.

It is extremely fortunate that mathematics is extremely predictable. 2 + 2 will always be equal to 4, no matter what.

Our world wouldn’t go very far if something unpredictable was used as the backbone of science. What if 2 + 2 would mostly result in 4, but also sometimes would result in 3, other times in 1000? What would happen if 2 + 2 would blow up (i. e. cause an exception), once in a while?

We’d probably still stay in the middle ages. Something similar has actually happened in the world of medicine — in the past there were no rigorous trials to confirm the efficacy of a particular treatment or medication. People relied on the opinion of doctors to treat their health problems (which unfortunately still happens in countries like Russia). In the past, ineffective techniques like bloodletting have been popular. Something as unsafe as arsenic was widely used.

Would it be useful for software to be predictable? Most certainly!

Yet unfortunately, the software industry of today is way too similar to the medicine of the past. As unfortunate as it…



Ilya Suzdalnitskiy