Column is an implementation of a function (similarly to how table is an implementations of a set). Theoretically, this approach leads to a data model based on two core elements: mathematical functions (new) and mathematical sets (old).
This approach was implemented in Prosto which is a data processing toolkit radically changing how data is processed by heavily relying on functions and operations with functions - an alternative to map-reduce and join-groupby.
https://github.com/asavinov/lambdo - Feature engineering and machine learning: together at last!
Yet, here the focus is on feature engineering and rethinking how it can be combined with traditional ML. Essentially, the point is that there no big differences and it is more natural and simpler to think of them as special cases of the same concept: features can be learned and ML models are frequently are used for producing intermediate results.