The iData Toolkit is a toolkit that allows programmers to create interactive, type-safe, dynamic web applications with state on a high level of abstraction. The key element of this toolkit is the iData element. An iData element is a form that is generated automatically from a type definition and that can be plugged in in the web page of a web application. In this paper we show how this automatic generation of forms has been implemented. The technique relies essentially on generic programming. It has resulted in a concise and flexible implementation. The kernel of the implementation can be reused for any graphical package. The iData Toolkit is an excellent demonstration of the expressive power of modern generic (poly-typical) programming techniques.


Server Side Functional Programming Declarative Language Arbitrary Type Automatic Creation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Alimarine, A.: Generic Functional Programming - Conceptual Design, Implementation and Applications. PhD thesis, University of Nijmegen, The Netherlands (2005) ISBN 3-540-67658-9Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Alimarine, A., Plasmeijer, R.: A Generic Programming Extension for Clean. In: Arts, T., Mohnen, M. (eds.) IFL 2002. LNCS, vol. 2312, pp. 168–186. Springer, Heidelberg (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Atanassow, F., Clarke, D., Jeuring, J.: UUXML: A type-preserving XML schema–haskell data binding. In: Jayaraman, B. (ed.) PADL 2004. LNCS, vol. 3057, pp. 71–85. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Atkins, D., Ball, T., Benedikt, M., Bruns, G., Cox, K., Mataga, P., Rehor, K.: Experience with a Domain Specific Language for Form-based Services. In: Usenix Conference on Domain Specific Languages (October 1997)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Barendsen, E., Smetsers, S.: Uniqueness typing for functional languages with graph rewriting semantics. In: Mathematical Structures in Computer Science, vol. 6, pp. 579–612 (1996)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Barendsen, E., Smetsers, S.: Graph Rewriting Aspects of Functional Programming, ch. 2, pp. 63–102. World scientific, Singapore (1999)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Brabrand, C., Møller, A., Ricky, M., Schwartzbach, M.I.: Powerforms: Declarative client-side form field validation. World Wide Web Journal 3(4), 205–314 (2000)MATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Brabrand, C., Møller, A., Schwartzbach, M.: The < bigwig > Project. In: ACM Transactions on Internet Technology (TOIT) (2002)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Elsman, M., Larsen, K.F.: Typing XHTML web applications in ML. In: Jayaraman, B. (ed.) PADL 2004. LNCS, vol. 3057, pp. 224–238. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Graunke, P., Krishnamurthi, S., Bruce Findler, R., Felleisen, M.: Automatically Restructuring Programs for the Web. In: Feather, M., Goedicke, M. (eds.) Proceedings 16th IEEE International Conference on Automated Software Engineering (ASE 2001). IEEE CS Press, Los Alamitos (2001)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Hanus, M.: High-level server side web scripting in curry. In: Ramakrishnan, I.V. (ed.) PADL 2001. LNCS, vol. 1990, pp. 76–92. Springer, Heidelberg (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Hinze, R.: A new approach to generic functional programming. In: The 27th Annual ACM SIGPLAN-SIGACT Symposium on Principles of Programming Languages, Boston, Massachusetts, pp. 119–132 (January 2000)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Hinze, R., Peyton Jones, S.: Derivable Type Classes. In: Hutton, G. (ed.) 2000 ACM SIGPLAN Haskell Workshop, Montreal, Canada. ENTCS, vol. 41(1). Elsevier Science, Amsterdam (2001)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Hughes, J.: Generalising Monads to Arrows. Science of Computer Programming 37, 67–111 (2000)MATHCrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Krasner, G., Pope, S.: A cookbook for using the Model-View-Controller user interface paradigm in Smalltalk-80. Journal of Object-Oriented Programming 1(3), 26–49 (1988)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Löh, A., Clarke, D., Jeuring, J.: Dependency-style Generic Haskell. In: Proceedings of the eighth ACM SIGPLAN International Conference on Functional Programming (ICFP 2003), pp. 141–152. ACM Press, New York (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Meijer, E.: Server Side Web Scripting in Haskell. Journal of Functional Programming 10(1), 1–18 (2000)CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Milner, R., Tofte, M., Harper, R., MacQueen, D.: The Definition of Standard ML (Revised). MIT Press, Cambridge (1997)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Peyton Jones, S., Hughes J., et al.: Report on the programming language Haskell 98. University of Yale (1999),
  20. 20.
    Plasmeijer, R., Achten, P.: Generic editors for the world wide web. In: Horváth, Z. (ed.) CEFP 2005. LNCS, vol. 4164, pp. 1–34. Springer, Heidelberg (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Plasmeijer, R., Achten, P.: iData for the world wide web – programming interconnected web forms. In: Hagiya, M., Wadler, P. (eds.) FLOPS 2006. LNCS, vol. 3945, pp. 242–258. Springer, Heidelberg (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Plasmeijer, R., van Eekelen, M.: Concurrent CLEAN Language Report (version 2.0) (December 2001),
  23. 23.
    Queinnec, C.: The influence of browsers on evaluators or, continuations to program web servers. In: Proceedings Fifth International Conference on Functional Programming (ICFP 2000) (September 2000)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Thiemann, P.: WASH/CGI: Server-side web scripting with sessions and typed, compositional forms. In: Krishnamurthi, S., Ramakrishnan, C.R. (eds.) PADL 2002. LNCS, vol. 2257, pp. 192–208. Springer, Heidelberg (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Thiemann, P.: A Typed Representation for HTML and XML Documents in Haskell. Journal of Functional Programming (Under consideration for publication) (2005) Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Wallace, M., Runciman, C.: Haskell and XML: Generic combinators or type-based translation? In: Proc. of the Fourth ACM SIGPLAN Intnl. Conference on Functional Programming (ICFP 1999), vol. 34(9), pp. 148–159. ACM, New York (1999)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rinus Plasmeijer
    • 1
  • Peter Achten
    • 1
  1. 1.Software Technology, Nijmegen Institute for Computing and Information SciencesRadboud UniversityNijmegen

Personalised recommendations