Online / 6 & 7 February 2021


What's next for Teal, the typed dialect of Lua

This talk is the third part in a trilogy of talks hosted at this devroom that chronicles the birth of Teal, a new programming language that is a typed dialect of Lua. In this talk I will present an update on Teal: we'll talk about the current status of the language and its nascent community, and look forward at what lies ahead for its future. We will discuss a bit about the recent evolution of the project, and where it can go from here while adding more power to the type checking while keeping the language simple.

In Part 1, "Minimalism versus types", presented at FOSDEM 2019, we talked about the previous projects that aimed at producing typed variants of Lua, the challenges they faced, and the idea of trying again with a focus on minimalism and pragmatism.

In Part 2, "Minimalistic typed Lua is here", presented at FOSDEM 2020, I presented the progress of the project, with a compiler that is able to type check itself and compile itself into Lua code. At that point, the language was still called tl.

Now in Part 3, the language has a name (Teal!), and a growing community. In "What's next for Teal", I will report on the advances we've made in the last year, and also address the elephant in the room: people keep asking for features, the language keeps growing, the type system has already made it more complicated than Lua, what about the minimalism? For that, we need to go full circle, revisit what minimalism means in the context of types, and how to approach it in a Lua-like way.


Photo of Hisham Muhammad Hisham Muhammad