>Should Linq be avoided because its slow?
No. It should be avoided if it is not fast enough. Slow and not fast enough are not at all the same thing!
Slow is irrelevant to your customers, your management and your stakeholders. Not fast enough is extremely relevant. Never measure how fast something is; that tells you nothing that you can use to base a business decision on. Measure how close to being acceptable to the customer it is. If it is acceptable then stop spending money on making it faster; it's already good enough.
>How can it be? Isn't the memory of a local variable inaccessible outside its function?
You rent a hotel room. You put a book in the top drawer of the bedside table and go to sleep. You check out the next morning, but "forget" to give back your key. You steal the key!
A week later, you return to the hotel, do not check in, sneak into your old room with your stolen key, and look in the drawer. Your book is still there. Astonishing!
How can that be? Isn't the contents of a hotel room drawer inaccessible if you haven't rented the room?
Well, obviously that scenario can happen in the real world no problem. There is no mysterious force that causes your book to disappear when you are no longer authorized to be in the room. Nor is there a mysterious force that prevents you from entering a room with a stolen key.
The hotel management is not required to remove your book. You didn't make a contract with them that said that if you leave stuff behind, they'll shred it for you. If you illegally re-enter your room with a stolen key to get it back, the hotel security staff is not required to catch you sneaking in. You didn't make a contract with them that said "if I try to sneak back into my room later, you are required to stop me." Rather, you signed a contract with them that said "I promise not to sneak back into my room later", a contract which you broke.
Why hasn't functional programming taken over yet? [closed]
Because all those advantages are also disadvantages.
Stateless programs; No side effects
Real-world programs are all about side effects and mutation. When the user presses a button it's because they want something to happen. When they type in something, they want that state to replace whatever state used to be there. When Jane Smith in accounting gets married and changes her name to Jane Jones, the database backing the business process that prints her paycheque had better be all about handling that sort of mutation. When you fire the machine gun at the alien, most people do not mentally model that as the construction of a new alien with fewer hit points; they model that as a mutation of an existing alien's properties.
When the programming language concepts fundamentally work against the domain being modelled, it's hard to justify using that language.
Concurrency; Plays extremely nice with the rising multi-core technology
The problem is just pushed around. With immutable data structures you have cheap thread safety at the cost of possibly working with stale data. With mutable data structures you have the benefit of always working on fresh data at the cost of having to write complicated logic to keep the data consistent. It's not like one of those is obviously better than the other.
Programs are usually shorter and in some cases easier to read
Except in the cases where they are longer and harder to read. Learning how to read programs written in a functional style is a difficult skill; people seem to be much better at conceiving of programs as a series of steps to be followed, like a recipe, rather than as a series of calculations to be carried out.
Productivity goes up (example: Erlang)
Productivity has to go up a lot in order to justify the massive expense of hiring programmers who know how to program in a functional style.
And remember, you don't want to throw away a working system; most programmers are not building new systems from scratch, but rather maintaining existing systems, most of which were built in non-functional languages. Imagine trying to justify that to shareholders. Why did you scrap your existing working payroll system to build a new one at the cost of millions of dollars? "Because functional programming is awesome" is unlikely to delight the shareholders.
Imperative programming is a very old paradigm (as far as I know) and possibly not suitable for the 21th century
Functional programming is very old too. I don't see how the age of the concept is relevant.
Don't get me wrong. I love functional programming, I joined this team because I wanted to help bring concepts from functional programming into C#, and I think that programming in an immutable style is the way of the future. But there are enormous costs to programming in a functional style that can't simply be wished away. The shift towards a more functional style is going to happen slowly and gradually over a period of decades. And that's what it will be: a shift towards a more functional style, not a wholesale embracing of the purity and beauty of Haskell and the abandoning of C++.
I build compilers for a living and we are definitely embracing a functional style for the next generation of compiler tools. That's because functional programming is fundamentally a good match for the sorts of problems we face. Our problems are all about taking in raw information -- strings and metadata -- and transforming them into different strings and metadata. In situations where mutations occur, like someone is typing in the IDE, the problem space inherently lends itself to functional techniques such as incrementally rebuilding only the portions of the tree that changed. Many domains do not have these nice properties that make them obviously amenable to a functional style.