Backward compatibility

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Re: Backward compatibility

Adrian May

What's getPackageId?  It does not appear in the WASH source.


It's in Setup.lhs, in WashNGo.




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Re: Backward compatibility

Tom Ellis
On Thu, May 02, 2013 at 11:10:33PM +0800, Adrian May wrote:
> > What's getPackageId?  It does not appear in the WASH source.
>
> It's in Setup.lhs, in WashNGo.

Which source of WashNGo are you using?  It doesn't appear in either of these
versions:

    http://hackage.haskell.org/package/WashNGo-2.12
    http://hackage.haskell.org/package/WashNGo-2.12.0.1

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Re: Backward compatibility

Adrian May

Which source of WashNGo are you using?  It doesn't appear in either of these
versions:

    http://hackage.haskell.org/package/WashNGo-2.12
    http://hackage.haskell.org/package/WashNGo-2.12.0.1


http://www.informatik.uni-freiburg.de/~thiemann/WASH/WashNGo-2.12.tgz

 
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Re: Backward compatibility

Tom Ellis
On Thu, May 02, 2013 at 11:23:12PM +0800, Adrian May wrote:
> > Which source of WashNGo are you using?  It doesn't appear in either of
> > these
> > versions:
> >
> >     http://hackage.haskell.org/package/WashNGo-2.12
> >     http://hackage.haskell.org/package/WashNGo-2.12.0.1
>
> http://www.informatik.uni-freiburg.de/~thiemann/WASH/WashNGo-2.12.tgz

I get a 403 FORBIDDEN on that.  How did you get it?


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Re: Backward compatibility

Ivan Lazar Miljenovic
In reply to this post by Brandon Allbery
On 3 May 2013 01:04, Brandon Allbery <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Thu, May 2, 2013 at 10:36 AM, Adrian May <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>>>
>>> I think you're missing the point of the platform!
>>
>>
>> I suppose I did miss the point of the platform: I was trying to build it,
>> which requires at least part of the
>
> Having to build it already indicates that something is wrong, unless you're
> porting to an unsupported OS/hardware.

Or you have a source-based distro, or you prefer building it yourself
rather than using distro packages (as they might be out of date or
b0rked), etc. ... ;-)

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Re: Backward compatibility

Adrian May
In reply to this post by Tom Ellis

I get a 403 FORBIDDEN on that.  How did you get it?

 
I guess you just gotta know the right people ;-)

I attached the tarball. Don't say you got it from me, OK.


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Re: Backward compatibility

Ertugrul Söylemez
Adrian May <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I attached the tarball. Don't say you got it from me, OK.

That's a weird thing to demand in a public mailing list with public
search-engine-locatable archives. =)


Greets,
Ertugrul

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Re: Backward compatibility

Tom Ellis
In reply to this post by Adrian May
On Thu, May 02, 2013 at 11:35:27PM +0800, Adrian May wrote:
> > I get a 403 FORBIDDEN on that.  How did you get it?
>
> I guess you just gotta know the right people ;-)
>
> I attached the tarball. Don't say you got it from me, OK.

That tarball still doesn't contain the string "getPackageId".

You're complaining that you can't build a package, which hasn't been
maintained for several years, which you got from a secret source, and whose
whose Hackage page specifically says it doesn't build beyond GHC 7.0.  I
don't think this is indicative of a serious failure of Haskell.

Tom

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Re: Backward compatibility

Stephen Tetley-2
In reply to this post by Adrian May
Hi Adrian

I don't want to argue against your rant for the sake of it, but
Haskell is a fairly conservative language. The Glasgow Haskell
Compiler supports it's own dialect "Glasgow Haskell" which is fast
moving, but the developers of GHC do work hard to maintain
compatibility with standard Haskell 98 and Haskell 2010 (optionally
enabled with compiler flags). Afterall Haskell now is fairly widely
used as a teaching language which befits stability as course
textbooks, lecture plans etc. can't be in hock to a language that
changes every year.

Best wishes

Stephen

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Re: Backward compatibility

Patrick Wheeler
In reply to this post by Tom Ellis
@Adrian May if you want that much backward compatibility you probably need to move to an operating system that suports it.

NixOS, already mentioned by another commentator,  would be my recommendation if you really need the backward compatibility  I just finished compiling both Flippi and WashNGo with ghc-7.0.4.

I do not want the GHC maintainers to be tied down by maintenance concerns any more then they already are, there time is more productively spent on concerns other then increasing backward compatibility.

For anyone who works on GHC thank you for helping support such a great ecosystem that enables this level of experimentation and rate of new features.

Patrick Wheeler


On Thu, May 2, 2013 at 11:50 AM, Tom Ellis <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Thu, May 02, 2013 at 11:35:27PM +0800, Adrian May wrote:
> > I get a 403 FORBIDDEN on that.  How did you get it?
>
> I guess you just gotta know the right people ;-)
>
> I attached the tarball. Don't say you got it from me, OK.

That tarball still doesn't contain the string "getPackageId".

You're complaining that you can't build a package, which hasn't been
maintained for several years, which you got from a secret source, and whose
whose Hackage page specifically says it doesn't build beyond GHC 7.0.  I
don't think this is indicative of a serious failure of Haskell.

Tom

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Re: Backward compatibility

Adrian May
In reply to this post by Tom Ellis
I'm sorry: it was showPackageId. And the tarball came from this page: http://www.informatik.uni-freiburg.de/~thiemann/WASH/ which certainly isn't secret to Gooliath: I got it by searching for "haskell cgi html". I don't know why you can't download it.

Anyway, I've noted your opinions but today I really need to get something done. Thanks for the discussion.

Adrian.



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Re: Backward compatibility

Alexander Solla
In reply to this post by Adrian May



On Thu, May 2, 2013 at 6:26 AM, Adrian May <[hidden email]> wrote:
So WASH is ancient history. OK, lets forget it.

How about the Haskell Platform? Is that ancient history? Certainly not: it doesn't compile on anything but the very newest GHC. Not 7.4.1 but 7.4.2.

GHC is up to 7.6.
 
Now that's rapid maintenance, but it's still version hell because you've got to have that compiler installed first (even though HP is supposed to be a way to acquire haskell) and you probably haven't. You've probably got the one from the linux package which hasn't been maintained since, ooh, must have been at least a week ago, so you install the new one and you've trashed cabal. How long is that puzzle gonna take to unravel?

About 12 seconds, if you read http://www.haskell.org/platform/linux.html:

Download the source tarball for Unix-like systems: here

Get and install GHC 7.4.2 prior to building the platform:

Finally, unpack the Haskell Platform source tarball, and run (possibly with 'sudo'):

    ./configure
    make
    make install



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Re: Backward compatibility

Carter Schonwald
In reply to this post by David Thomas
Emphatic agreement on this point. 

Likewise, the strong type system and the often helpful type error messages make it really easy to update code to work with more modern libs!

-Carter


On Thu, May 2, 2013 at 9:39 AM, David Thomas <[hidden email]> wrote:

If you are actively using something then keep it up to date, encourage someone to keep it up to date, pay someone to keep it up to date, or migrate off of it.  If you try building with a fresh set of packages every so often, you can catch breaking changes early and deal with them when it's typically pretty clear why things broke.

On May 2, 2013 6:33 AM, "Adrian May" <[hidden email]> wrote:
So WASH is ancient history. OK, lets forget it.

How about the Haskell Platform? Is that ancient history? Certainly not: it doesn't compile on anything but the very newest GHC. Not 7.4.1 but 7.4.2. Now that's rapid maintenance, but it's still version hell because you've got to have that compiler installed first (even though HP is supposed to be a way to acquire haskell) and you probably haven't. You've probably got the one from the linux package which hasn't been maintained since, ooh, must have been at least a week ago, so you install the new one and you've trashed cabal. How long is that puzzle gonna take to unravel? That's how I spent my afternoon today, instead of getting on with my job. Now you might think I was silly not to have uninstalled the linux package first, but I tried, and then decided against it because it thought the entire OS depended on it and actually proposed to remove everything from clib to googleearth as a solution. It's not Haskell's fault that linux package management is as broken as any other for the same reasons, but in an imperfect world, it's better not to keep moving the furniture around. 

Why was I trying to build the Haskell Platform at all? Because it wasn't obvious to me that a 7 year old library would be doomed. I find it perfectly normal to be able to compile C code from the 1970s but still run STL through the same compiler. That's why I blamed the system instead of the library. And unless somebody can explain to me how I would rescue my business now if I had opted for WASH in that long-forgotten era when Barack Obama was barely known, a Russian spy was poisoned with Polonium and a Sudanese man was ordered to marry a goat he was caught in an intimate position with, then I still see it that way.

Adrian.
 







On 2 May 2013 19:57, Ertugrul Söylemez <[hidden email]> wrote:
John Lato <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I don't think there's anything wrong with moving at a fast pace, nor
> do I think backwards compatibility should be maintained in perpetuity.

I think this statement pretty much covers the mindset of the Haskell
community and also explains the higher breakage rate of Haskell packages
when compared to other languages, in particular non-static ones:  We
move at a very fast pace.  Innovations are made all the time.  Without
this feature we wouldn't be where we are today.

Of course Haskell, being a rigorously static and correct language and a
community that equally rigorously insists on correctness of design
patterns we have to live with the fact that we need to fix the breakages
we introduce, and we do that.  This is a good thing.


> Unfortunately this leaves a lot of scope for migrations to be handled
> poorly, and for unintended consequences of shiny new systems.  IMHO
> both have caused issues for Haskell developers and users in the recent
> and more distant past.  This is an issue where I think the community
> should continually try to improve, and if a user calls out a
> difficulty we should at least try to learn from it and not repeat the
> same mistake.

I think we do that.  The most severe breakages are introduced by new GHC
versions.  That's why there is the Haskell Platform.  If users decide to
move to new versions sooner they should be prepared to handle the
breakages.  In particular a Haskell beginner simply shouldn't use
GHC-HEAD.  Our type system makes us aware of the breakages we introduce
and gives us the opportunity to fix them properly before exposing them
to the users.

With this in mind I don't think there is anything to learn from this
particular case.  You wouldn't use WASH today for the same reasons you
wouldn't use Linux 0.x.  It's a legacy, and the ideas from it have
inspired the more recent web frameworks, which are more convenient,
faster, more real-world-oriented.  In fact I totally expect a new
generation of web frameworks to pop up in the future, more categorical,
even more convenient and less error-prone.


Greets,
Ertugrul

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Re: Backward compatibility

Alexander Solla
In reply to this post by Alexander Solla
 
Now that's rapid maintenance, but it's still version hell because you've got to have that compiler installed first (even though HP is supposed to be a way to acquire haskell) and you probably haven't. You've probably got the one from the linux package which hasn't been maintained since, ooh, must have been at least a week ago, so you install the new one and you've trashed cabal. How long is that puzzle gonna take to unravel?

About 12 seconds, if you read http://www.haskell.org/platform/linux.html:

Download the source tarball for Unix-like systems: here

Get and install GHC 7.4.2 prior to building the platform:

Finally, unpack the Haskell Platform source tarball, and run (possibly with 'sudo'):

    ./configure
    make
    make install

Also, the Haskell Platform ./configure step checks which version of GHC you have installed, and requires you to pass the option --enable-unsupported-ghc-version in order to compile it with anything other than GHC 7.4.2.

Did you try an unsupported version?  And now you're complaining? 

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Re: Backward compatibility

Adrian May

Also, the Haskell Platform ./configure step checks which version of GHC you have installed, and requires you to pass the option --enable-unsupported-ghc-version in order to compile it with anything other than GHC 7.4.2.

Did you try an unsupported version?  And now you're complaining? 

This is getting into minutia now, but yes I tried the unsupported flag and as I already explained it barfed about the prelude. So I installed 7.4.2 from source but that confused cabal because my attempt to uninstall the ubuntu package with 7.4.1 in had failed with dependency-hell. Figuring out why (or even that) my packages weren't being seen was the puzzle I was referring to. The point is that we wouldn't have to be talking about this at all if people didn't move the furniture around all the time. 

> Likewise, the strong type system and the often helpful type error messages 
> make it really easy to update code to work with more modern libs!

I'm also a big fan of the error messages, but it's nice to know if I caused them or somebody else did.


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Re: Backward compatibility

Alexander Solla



On Thu, May 2, 2013 at 8:43 PM, Adrian May <[hidden email]> wrote:

Also, the Haskell Platform ./configure step checks which version of GHC you have installed, and requires you to pass the option --enable-unsupported-ghc-version in order to compile it with anything other than GHC 7.4.2.

Did you try an unsupported version?  And now you're complaining? 

This is getting into minutia now, but yes I tried the unsupported flag and as I already explained it barfed about the prelude.

How is it minutia that you expect an unsupported version of GHC to work?

Yes, I try it out sometimes.  And if it works, great.  If not, too bad, I'll wait until the next Haskell Platform.  I don't whine about it in public.
 
So I installed 7.4.2 from source but that confused cabal because my attempt to uninstall the ubuntu package with 7.4.1 in had failed with dependency-hell. Figuring out why (or even that) my packages weren't being seen was the puzzle I was referring to.

So the complaint is about Ubuntu?
 
The point is that we wouldn't have to be talking about this at all if people didn't move the furniture around all the time. 

That's not a very good point. It sounds as though you're the one who moved furniture around, considering that you managed to mix up Ubuntu's GHC package with your hand-built ones.




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Re: Backward compatibility

Adrian May


Yes, I try it out sometimes.  And if it works, great.  If not, too bad, I'll wait until the next Haskell Platform.  I don't whine about it in public.

May I venture a guess that you never tried to manage a 5-10 million line project?

That's what I do. I'm not a programmer, I'm a manager. I run teams of a few dozen people on subprojects within huge telecom-related projects, and my job is to try and keep it all from collapsing in a heap of bugs. 

If you had any experience of that you'd run a mile from any technology with this hit and miss attitude. I can't tell people what version they should be using because half of them work for a completely different company. They have their own dependencies coming from other projects that I'm not even allowed to know about. One of the ways I keep codebases alive is by telling people not to assume that somebody else is following the instructions in their heads. If anybody in my team wants to assume anything about the versions of anything they interact with, they'll need a very good argument as to why they can't make their bit more flexible. But I never had to be scared of upgrading any compiler, except python that is.

Is anybody in the Haskell community still interested in attracting new users? If so I suggest you go play with Ruby on Rails. Then you'll know what it's like to approach a complex and unfamiliar system where every crumb requires a precise version of every other. If you had my job, you'd find out what you needed to know within half an hour.
 

 
So I installed 7.4.2 from source but that confused cabal because my attempt to uninstall the ubuntu package with 7.4.1 in had failed with dependency-hell. Figuring out why (or even that) my packages weren't being seen was the puzzle I was referring to.

So the complaint is about Ubuntu?

I think we all know that package management is tricky and ubuntu are struggling, but that would be another topic.
 
 
The point is that we wouldn't have to be talking about this at all if people didn't move the furniture around all the time. 

That's not a very good point. It sounds as though you're the one who moved furniture around, considering that you managed to mix up Ubuntu's GHC package with your hand-built ones.


Well now you're just playing with words. I've already explained how it happened.
 


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Re: Backward compatibility

Gregory Collins-3
On Fri, May 3, 2013 at 6:48 AM, Adrian May <[hidden email]> wrote:
May I venture a guess that you never tried to manage a 5-10 million line project?

I build a project a couple orders of magnitude bigger than that dozens of times every day. Similar stories are not uncommon among people who inhabit this list. But thanks, citing that figure as an excuse to be condescending to that person was really worth a giggle this morning. :)


That's what I do. I'm not a programmer, I'm a manager. I run teams of a few dozen people on subprojects within huge telecom-related projects, and my job is to try and keep it all from collapsing in a heap of bugs. 

If you had any experience of that you'd run a mile from any technology with this hit and miss attitude.

You keep saying things like this. Actually, you're in this situation because one or more people within your organization have made a succession of very bad choices. Haskell is not to blame. Personally, I almost can't believe you're taking this tack on the list now that the details of your situation are apparent: you've let a 5-10 million line project spiral out of control without putting the necessary software engineering infrastructure and controls in place.

 
I can't tell people what version they should be using because half of them work for a completely different company. They have their own dependencies coming from other projects that I'm not even allowed to know about.

... and the truth emerges. This issue you're having reflects a lot more strongly on your technical culture than it does on any instability in GHC.

Listen: someone within your organization decided to build a product based on a very old library which is no longer maintained by anyone. If this library were actually critical to your business, you would fork it and either get someone in-house or pay a contractor to fix bugs and keep it up to date. (And there are plenty of people here who might be interested in a contract gig to fix this for you if you asked).

Repeatedly claiming in the most histrionic terms that GHC ought to freeze forever and never deprecate anything again so that you can avoid doing your job properly is simply not realistic, especially given Haskell's social culture (newsflash: it's a research platform), and is not going to garner you any sympathy on this list, either. You could practically be the poster boy for why we have the motto "avoid success at all costs".

You have two options: stay on GHC 6.x (the bits didn't get deleted from the internet), and if that isn't practical, fix Wash (or pay someone to do it if you don't know how) and get on with your life.

G
--
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Re: Backward compatibility

Simon Peyton Jones

One of the great things about the Haskell mailing lists is the supportive, respectful tone that is the dominant mode of discourse.  I sense that things are getting a little out of control in this particular thread.  Even though this particular issue is clearly extremely frustrating for those involved, it would be great to turn down the emotional temperature.

 

I don’t know why Haskell folk tend to be so generous and helpful, but they really are. (Maybe it’s the hylomorphisms.)  Anyway, let’s keep it that way.

 

Simon

 

From: [hidden email] [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of Gregory Collins
Sent: 03 May 2013 08:27
To: Adrian May
Cc: Haskell Cafe
Subject: Re: [Haskell-cafe] Backward compatibility

 

On Fri, May 3, 2013 at 6:48 AM, Adrian May <[hidden email]> wrote:

May I venture a guess that you never tried to manage a 5-10 million line project?

 

I build a project a couple orders of magnitude bigger than that dozens of times every day. Similar stories are not uncommon among people who inhabit this list. But thanks, citing that figure as an excuse to be condescending to that person was really worth a giggle this morning. :)

 

 

That's what I do. I'm not a programmer, I'm a manager. I run teams of a few dozen people on subprojects within huge telecom-related projects, and my job is to try and keep it all from collapsing in a heap of bugs. 

 

If you had any experience of that you'd run a mile from any technology with this hit and miss attitude.

 

You keep saying things like this. Actually, you're in this situation because one or more people within your organization have made a succession of very bad choices. Haskell is not to blame. Personally, I almost can't believe you're taking this tack on the list now that the details of your situation are apparent: you've let a 5-10 million line project spiral out of control without putting the necessary software engineering infrastructure and controls in place.

 

 

I can't tell people what version they should be using because half of them work for a completely different company. They have their own dependencies coming from other projects that I'm not even allowed to know about.


... and the truth emerges. This issue you're having reflects a lot more strongly on your technical culture than it does on any instability in GHC.

 

Listen: someone within your organization decided to build a product based on a very old library which is no longer maintained by anyone. If this library were actually critical to your business, you would fork it and either get someone in-house or pay a contractor to fix bugs and keep it up to date. (And there are plenty of people here who might be interested in a contract gig to fix this for you if you asked).

 

Repeatedly claiming in the most histrionic terms that GHC ought to freeze forever and never deprecate anything again so that you can avoid doing your job properly is simply not realistic, especially given Haskell's social culture (newsflash: it's a research platform), and is not going to garner you any sympathy on this list, either. You could practically be the poster boy for why we have the motto "avoid success at all costs".

 

You have two options: stay on GHC 6.x (the bits didn't get deleted from the internet), and if that isn't practical, fix Wash (or pay someone to do it if you don't know how) and get on with your life.

 

G

--
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Re: Backward compatibility

Adrian May
In reply to this post by Gregory Collins-3

 you've let a 5-10 million line project spiral out of control without putting the necessary software engineering infrastructure and controls in place ... This issue you're having reflects a lot more strongly on your technical culture than it does on any instability in GHC.

I can't dictate either that culture or the whole project. I often walk into projects that have been mismanaged for years and try to prop them up. Crap languages are also to blame and that's why I'm interested in Haskell at all. But it's the reality I have to live with. It would be a lot easier for me to sell better languages if they at least paid some heed to backward compatibility.  

Listen: someone within your organization decided to build a product based on a very old library which is no longer maintained by anyone. If this library were actually critical to your business, you would fork it and either get someone in-house or pay a contractor to fix bugs and keep it up to date. (And there are plenty of people here who might be interested in a contract gig to fix this for you if you asked).

Fine. Go ahead and write yourself a blank cheque on my account. Maintenance costs are a fact of life anyway. What I don't understand is why people are trying to maximise them when I'm trying to minimise them.
 
Repeatedly claiming in the most histrionic terms that GHC ought to freeze forever and never deprecate anything again

Now you're putting words into my mouth. I've said from the very first posting that I acknowledge the need for change but would like it to be restricted to stuff that's actually useful and/or necessary instead of changing things just for the hell of it. I'm asking for a compromise. I said that from the start.
 
newsflash: it's a research platform),

That would be a newsflash. I seem to remember it wanting to be a popular quasi-standard FP.

 
and is not going to garner you any sympathy on this list, either. You could practically be the poster boy for why we have the motto "avoid success at all costs".
 
Now you're just being rude.
 
You have two options: stay on GHC 6.x (the bits didn't get deleted from the internet), and if that isn't practical, fix Wash (or pay someone to do it if you don't know how) and get on with your life.

I already found newer libs anyway. 

I really don't know why somebody can't make a simple and well intentioned point without getting attacked by people who feel threatened over every little thing. I said from the start that I think Haskell is cool. I'd just like it to pay a bit more attention to practical issues whilst making progress with its theoretical ones. 

Why don't you just put it in the forum rules that nobody is ever allowed to criticise anything? 
 
At the end of the day, I'm just a typical manager who's atypical in wishing he could tell his programmers to study a bit of Haskell without making it a synch for the manager next door to knife him in the back for suggesting something that looks this unstable. This is the real deal on how Haskell looks out there in the mass market. You can lead a horse to water...



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