This page is kept for historical purposes only. Please see the home page for my current situation. —Luca Saiu.

DLL (Développement de Logiciel Libre) - 2010

DLL is a course introducing the philosophy and practice of
free software, taught by me at Institut Galilée, Université Paris Nord. For some strange reason I don't really understand this course used to be named "DEVL"; anyway, fine-tuning and evaluation rules apart, DLL is still the same as DEVL.

The course has been completely in French since 2009, but I still maintain these pages in English. There are essentially three reasons:

Mailing list: if you're a DLL student then you should subscribe

In September 2010 I made a new course mailing list, used for communications and answering questions: if you are a DLL student you are strongly advised to subscribe using this simple web interface. You can send a message to all subscribers (including me, of course) by writing to the address . Please remember that all messages are publicly archived on this page; you are free to use a nickname instead of your real name on the list, if you prefer so. The two old lists I created for previous years don't work any longer.

Useful resources for the theoretical part

You can find some course slides on the DLL 2007 page, and other material on the DLL 2008 page.

I've given a long seminar about free software at the Villetaneuse IUT on the 15th December 2009. The slides I've used can be quite useful also for you; they don't cover all the theoretical topics in our course, but most of them are there. Reading the slides is a particularly good idea for a quick review.

Useful resources for the practical part

I've not personally read it yet, but many people have recommanded this free book conceived for command-line beginners: Introduction to the Command Line.

You are strongly encouraged to use the Guile manual. It's very well-written.

Some students asked me for a tutorial on Scheme. For people having some time to spend (in a useful way) I have recommended the SICP video lectures: it's a full course in video you can freely download, following Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs (the whole book text is also freely available on the net, here) by the book authors Harold Abelson and Gerald J. Sussman. The course is about programming in general (with some emphasis on computer languages), and it uses Scheme as a tool. Enlightening and surprisingly deep for an introduction.

Matériel du cours en français

Plusieurs étudiants souhaitent du matériel en français. Les sujets du cours sont presque complètement couverts par ces documents.


You can find here all the material that I distribute on paper in class.

Lab exercises

I will keep into account the good things you do in the lab for your final mark; anyway, I will not take into account your mistakes: if you have questions or "stupid" doubts I don't want you to hide them; I want you to explicitly ask me. If you want to be anonymous you can use the list, but it's not really needed in this case. Just ask me.

Big Project

The Big Project has its own page now.

Written exam

The written exam is canceled.


Le devoir a sa page maintenant [certains sujets ont été effacés et ils ne son plus valides pour le rattrapage].

Final mark

If this is not the first time you do the exam, please notice that the evaluation rules have changed: the old "sum" rule doesn't hold any more.

You will be able to choose either of:

The choice is exclusive: if you submit a big project then you can't come to the written exam submit a dévoir, and vice-versa.

In case you do something particularly good I will also keep into account what you do in the lab, but if you do a very nice project or a perfect written exam dévoir you will have 20/20, independently from that.

Don't even think about cheating

Speaking with other students and sharing ideas is okay. Copying nontrivial code from others is cheating. Adding your name to nontrivial code (or text) written by others is cheating. It's also illegal.
If you cheat you'll flunk the exam, in the best case.

Please don't be offended by this section if you are a honest student, as you're supposed to be. It's actually very sad that I have to write this, but experience has thaught me that not all students behave like reasonable and mature people, so I need to treat some of them like elementary school children even if they're old enough to vote.

I always like to be friendly and informal, and maybe my easygoing behavior may be misinterpreted; so I say it explicitly: I will be inflexible on this. You're old enough to vote, hence you must take responsibility for your actions. If you cheat your final mark will be zero and I will notify the people in charge. And please avoid pathetic scenes after it happens: no crying, no begging. At least save me that part of the job.

I simply refuse to believe that the other teachers don't read the source submitted by students; yet, for some crazy reason, some students believe that I don't, so they send me stuff copied from the Internet or from other students.
If you want to make me very angry, that's the right way. Don't insult my intelligence like that.

Back to my home page...

Luca Saiu
Last modified: 2011-05-16
Copyright © 2009, 2010 Luca Saiu
Verbatim copying and redistribution of this entire page are permitted provided this notice is preserved.