Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs - 2nd Edition (MIT Electrical Engineering and Computer Science)

Category: Programming
Author: Harold Abelson, Gerald Jay Sussman, Julie Sussman
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About This Book

Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs has had a dramatic impact on computer science curricula over the past decade.

This long-awaited revision contains changes throughout the text. There are new implementations of most of the major programming systems in the book, including the interpreters and compilers, and the authors have incorporated many small changes that reflect their experience teaching the course at MIT since the first edition was published.

A new theme has been introduced that emphasizes the central role played by different approaches to dealing with time in computational models: objects with state, concurrent programming, functional programming and lazy evaluation, and nondeterministic programming.

There are new example sections on higher-order procedures in graphics and on applications of stream processing in numerical programming, and many new exercises. In addition, all the programs have been reworked to run in any Scheme implementation that adheres to the IEEE standard.


by bmitc   2022-05-03
* How to Code: Simple Data and How to Code: Complex Data on edX. Taught by Gregor Kiczales, of Common Lisp and CLOS fame. Uses Racket and graphical programs to teach.

* The How to Design Programs book. What the edX course above is based upon.

* Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs (SICP). Uses Scheme. One can use Racket with the `#lang sicp` language.

YouTube playlist of the course by the authors:

* Learning Processing: A Beginner's Guide to Programming Images, Animation, and Interaction and also The Nature of Code: Simulating Natural Systems with Processing. Uses Processing and p5.js (the JavaScript version of Processing).

The author's YouTube channel:

by nightski   2022-04-04
You should not approach problems in functional languages with imperative techniques. It's fitting a square peg in a round hole. The approaches & data structures aren't always the same.

In my experience with FP you start with more of a top down approach in contrast to the bottom up approach discussed in the blog post.

There are many good resources on this. I've referenced a few below. Of course there are many more.





by notoriousarun   2021-02-20
"Will Change The Way You Think About Computing."

> Have you read SICP?

by anonymous   2019-07-21

Most functional languages support inner functions. So you can just create your graph representation in the outermost layer and just reference it from the inner function.

This book covers it extensively

by anonymous   2019-07-21

You can find intresting things about functional programming in first chapters of SICP

def permute2(str,prefix="")

  if str.size==0
    [prefix] #revise for concatenate with memo
    str.chars.each_with_index.inject([]) do |memo, ary|
        s = ary[0]
        i = ary[1]
        memo += permute2(str.remove_char_at(i),prefix+s) #memoize

by b3b0p   2019-07-06
Probably not able to completed during a single 3 months unless you do it full time, but I picked up a copy of SICP [0] and started reading through and working through every-single-problem. I got stuck so far on one problem in the first chapter toward the end at the moment. I will say, Scheme is fun! The problems can be challenging, short, and very rewarding.

However, maybe I'm not very smart and feel like I might have a very hard time with it. I'm not that great at math I don't think, nor do I consider myself genius like. Did people who go through this book do every single problem and figure it out themselves? There are a lot more problems then I expected. They are also, so far, some to be quite challenging and math heavy. It does really feel like it helps get my brain thinking differently about a lot of problems and I love it! But it also feels like I might start grinding a lot and burn out on it. Any tips or help or suggestions how to get through it successfully, get a good amount of education out of, and continue to be excited to keep moving forward?


I know it's free online, but I wanted a physical edition.

by shakna   2018-12-04
If you've never met Scheme, then SICP [0, 1, 2] may be something that can change the way you program. It certainly made me better, or at least a deeper understanding.



by panta   2017-10-11
I can't recommend courses, because I don't have direct experience of any, but given what you say, my suggestion would be to take a bit of a pause from pragmatic problems, and dedicate some time to learn the foundations of computer science, in particular about algorithms and data structures. I'd recommend a couple of books: "The Algorithm Design Manual" by Steven Skiena if you want something not too theoretical, or "Introduction to Algorithms" by Cormen, Leiserson, Rivest, if you want a bit more breadth and theory:

As a second suggestion, I'd recommend to learn a language somewhat different from JavaScript-like (or C-like) languages, something that challenges your mind to think a little differently and understand and create higher order abstractions. There are many choices, but to avoid confusion and being my favourite, I'll point to one: read the "Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs" by Abelson and Sussman. It teaches Scheme in a gentle and inspiring way but at the same time it teaches how to become a better programmer:

I can't recommend it enough. If you read it, do the exercises, don't limit to read through them.

Maybe it's even better if you start with this, and THEN read the books on algorithms and data structures.

Enjoy your journey!

by cliffwarden   2017-08-19
Not sure if this is the right direction or not. In different ways they are all, essentially, about programming...

Good luck!

by nmjohn   2017-08-19
Amazons URL's are actually quite interesting -


It appears so long as 'dp/0262510871' is in the url (without dp/# appearing before it, but a second one after is fine) it works.