Last Week in Pony - February 2, 2020

Sunday, February 02, 2020 | Posted in Last Week in Pony

Our community Zulip has over 500 members! Ryan A. Hagenson introduces pony-bio, a bioinformatics library for the Pony ecosystem.

Items of note

  • Audio from the January 28, 2020 Pony sync is available here. Most of the conversation is related to Joe’s work on looking into integrating a Pony-like language with Verona runtime.

  • The Zulip got its 500th member this week. What an awesome milestone. Baby steps to programming language domination. Baby steps.

@rhagenson’s introduction to pony-bio

There is growing interest in using Pony for Bioinformatics!

As the admin of pony-bio, I shared my intent on its design with the community, namely:

pony-bio should be tightly integrated to achieve the most benefit – this is counter to a previous Bioinformatics library I designed (sembio/go), which has intentional loose coupling.

I am looking toward Rust-Bio (of which I am also a contributor) as a model Bioinformatics library for organizational concerns and future integration should a pure-Pony solution not be fast enough.

My personal philosophy is that a Bioinformatics library should make the routine and obvious just that: routine and obvious. Additional complexity has a cost, most problematically on the programmer knowing their code is correct as expected – correctness is paramount in Bioinformatics. Therefore, I am using the Rosalind problem set ( as a reference for the operations that should never be made complicated.

A special :tada: thank you :tada: to @adri326, who cleaned up my mess of an initial pony-bio draft.

I invite anyone to contribute to pony-bio and help shape the future of Bioinformatics in Pony! :smiley: Anyone wishing to get involved can reach out to me on Zulip.

Last Week In Pony is a weekly blog post to catch you up on the latest news for the Pony programming language. To learn more about Pony check out our website, our Twitter account @ponylang, or our Zulip community.

Got something you think should be featured? There’s a GitHub issue for that! Add a comment to the open “Last Week in Pony” issue.

Interested in making a change, or keeping up with changes to Pony? Check out the RFC repo. Contributors welcome!


Theo Butler

Theo is a member of the Pony core team. His interests include persistent data structures, programming languages, and writing software while listening to Swancore.