Workshop summary

The history of programming languages shows a continuous search for new composition mechanisms, which are better suited for structuring increasingly complex software systems into modules that can be developed and reused independently. Well-known examples are procedure calls, object aggregation, function composition, inheritance, delegation, mix-ins, aspects, and so forth. Composition mechanisms can address various forms of composition of objects or components at the level of their behavior or interactions, e.g., by design patterns, contracts or explicit protocols. They can be general-purpose, but there is also a wide variety of domain-specific compositions, which are applicable for certain categories of applications. 

However, most languages adopt a very small and fixed set of composition mechanisms, usually with explicit notation and predefined semantics. If a language does not provide any mechanisms with the required compositional behavior, programmers need to write workarounds in the application program, which typically have a negative impact on the quality of the software. Alternatively, they may introduce the new composition mechanisms through macros, libraries, frameworks or language extensions, which also negatively affects the application if it is not well-integrated with the application program.

This workshop intends to stimulate research in program-ming languages and software development by exploring the notion that languages should not offer a limited set of fixed composition mechanisms, but allow for flexibility, a wide variety of compositions, domain-specific and tailored compositions, or programmable compositions of various program artifacts.

3rd Workshop on Free Composition

SPLASH 2012, Tucson, Arizona, USA

an artist impression of a Star Wars ‘FREECO bike’ (

October 22, 2012
Tucson, Arizona, USA

Workshop on Free Composition

Latest news & changes

Oct 15:

Sep 13:

Sep 5:

Jul 2:

May 30:

Contact information

FREECO 2012 is organized by:

    Christoph Bockisch (University of Twente)

    Lodewijk Bergmans (University of Twente)
    Ian Piumarta (Viewpoints Research Institute)

    Steven te Brinke (University of Twente)

mail the organizers at:


(replace underscores with dots)

freeco 2012 SPLASH workshop:

Future of composition techniques and modularity in programming languages

FREECO@SPLASH2012 is a FREECO initiativeshapeimage_2_link_0

Workshop takes place on October 22

Important Dates:

Aug 17:

Sep 3:

Oct 7:

Nov 11:

Submission Deadline

Notification of Acceptance

Position Statement Deadline &

Workshop Copy Deadline

Camera-Ready Copy Deadline

papers available for download

invited talks are announced

accepted papers are listed

updated list of PC members

website live