Getting Started

Getting started with any new programming language can seem like a daunting task, and the Dyalog application development platform ships with enough features that you might appreciate some guidance to help you get started. The resources on this page are free of charge and aimed at APL novices.

APL Seeds: Events aimed at those who are just starting their APL journey.
APL Seeds '24 will be held on Wednesday 27 March 2024.
Download materials/recordings from: APL Seeds '21 | APL Seeds '22 | APL Seeds '23


APL has a thriving and enthusiastic community of users who are very happy to answer questions:


Resources to help you take your first APL steps:

  • Tips is a page of "useful to know" suggestions from previous beginners.
  • Videos: Dyalog Basics is a library of introductory videos.
  • Mastering Dyalog APL by Bernard Legrand is a complete guide to the use of Dyalog, beginning with a thorough introduction to the APL programming language and progressing to worked examples. The book is available for purchase through Amazon; a free PDF download and an online revision (currently under development) are also available.
  • TryAPL offers an interactive environment that allows users to play with simple APL expressions. Its Learn tab includes tutorials in which various scenarios are explored.
  • APL Wiki includes simple examples of APL in action (as well as some more advanced ones).
  • APL Cultivation is a series of chat lessons that were run through the APL Orchard chat room.
  • APL Course is a self-study introduction to Dyalog with exercises.
  • APL Tutor is an online system that takes a complete novice through the terminology, conventions and functionality of APL (not specific to Dyalog's dialect) – it looks a little dated but is a useful introduction.
  • APL Challenge is a free-to-enter competition aimed at new APLers, with questions designed to illustrate the use of functions and operators.

Advancing your Knowledge

Resources to use as you become more familiar with APL:

Development Environment

Resources to help you with APL's Unicode symbols and environment:

  • Entering APL Symbols: The Fonts and Keyboards page includes free-to-download font files and installation instructions for different operating systems. Physical keyboards engraved with Dyalog glyphs are also available here.
  • Using the Dyalog IDE: A set of introductory videos introduces some of the features. Full documentation is also available: