Re: ANN: CmdArgs - easy command line argument processing

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Re: ANN: CmdArgs - easy command line argument processing

Ben Franksen
Neil Mitchell wrote:

> I am pleased to announce CmdArgs v0.1. CmdArgs is a library for easy
> command line argument processing - taking the arguments passed into
> your program from getArgs and converting them into a structured value
> for use in your program. Compared to the System.Console.GetOpts
> library there are two key advantages:
>
> 1) The command line argument processors are shorter - in a typical
> case they are about 1/3 the size, 90 lines with getopts vs 30 simpler
> lines with CmdArgs (for HLint).
>
> 2) CmdArgs can support multiple mode command lines, such as those
> found in hpc, darcs and cabal.
>
> The guiding principle of CmdArgs is to try and write each piece of
> information only once, which makes the command line processing
> shorter, and eliminates many of the accidental copy-and-paste style
> bugs that are easy with getopts. CmdArgs requires GHC, but other than
> this restriction, I do not foresee any reason for anyone to use
> getopts over CmdArgs.

I very much like the general idea of this thing, but have a question
regarding the interface. This is from the docs:

(&=) :: a -> Attrib -> a
  Add attributes to a value. Always returns the first argument, but
  has a non-pure effect on the environment. Take care when performing
  program transformations.

  value &= attrib1 & attrib2

To expose an impure function (!) in an API, I don't know... I mean, couldn't
one just wrap the value like this

  data Attributed a -- opaque

  (&=) :: a -> Attrib -> Attributed a

  mode :: Data a => Attributed a -> Mode a

and thus retain a purely functional interface?

Cheers
Ben

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Re: Re: ANN: CmdArgs - easy command line argument processing

Max Bolingbroke-2
2009/9/28 Ben Franksen <[hidden email]>:

> To expose an impure function (!) in an API, I don't know... I mean, couldn't
> one just wrap the value like this
>
>  data Attributed a -- opaque
>
>  (&=) :: a -> Attrib -> Attributed a
>
>  mode :: Data a => Attributed a -> Mode a
>
> and thus retain a purely functional interface?

Hi Ben,

I don't think this would work because you need to be able to put the
Attributed things in the fields of your command options data type. If
they are wrapped in an "Attributed" then this may not be possible. In
particular the sample won't compile in your proposal:

data Sample = Sample {hello :: String} deriving (Show, Data, Typeable)

sample = mode $ Sample{hello = def &= text "World argument" & empty "world"}

Because the &= would return an Attributed String whereas you are
actually after a String. Essential the problem is that attributes are
attached to *fields*, but mode consumes a *record*.

The best way to do this typefully is to paramaterise the options data
type with a functor:

data Sample f = Sample {hello :: f String} deriving (Show, Data, Typeable)

Now you can do what you want, where mode :: Data a => a Attribute ->
Mode (a Id). In fact, you could even do away with Data and substitute
some sort of Foldable/Traversable as long as you were happy with the
library not being able to fill in a default argument name from the
record field name.

The current interface is the best tradeoff given what Neil is trying
to do IMHO - though the side effects make me shudder too!

Cheers,
Max
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Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Doralicio
In the last months, I made the experience it seems difficult to find
commercial Haskell developer teams to take responsibility for projects
in the range of $ 10.000 - 100.000. The Industrial Haskell Group does
not seem to be the appropriate place for this, while harvesting Haskell
team at general market places appears to be tedious.

I would be very interested in others' experiences, and inhowfar my
opinion is shared that there should be a demand for such a market place,
for developer teams as well as those sympathizing with introducing
Haskell somewhere.

Nick
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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

John A. De Goes

It's very difficult to find information on:

1. How many Haskell developers are out there;
2. What a typical salary is for a Haskell developer;
3. Whether or not the skills of a typical Haskell developer scale to large applications (most Haskell developers are "hobby" Haskellers and have only written tiny to small Haskell apps);
4. How many shops are capable of handling Haskell development & maintenance.

These are the kinds of information one needs to make an informed decision about whether to introduce Haskell into the workplace.

Regards,

John A. De Goes
N-Brain, Inc.
The Evolution of Collaboration

http://www.n-brain.net    |    877-376-2724 x 101

On Sep 28, 2009, at 7:01 AM, Jörg Roman Rudnick wrote:

In the last months, I made the experience it seems difficult to find commercial Haskell developer teams to take responsibility for projects in the range of $ 10.000 - 100.000. The Industrial Haskell Group does not seem to be the appropriate place for this, while harvesting Haskell team at general market places appears to be tedious.

I would be very interested in others' experiences, and inhowfar my opinion is shared that there should be a demand for such a market place, for developer teams as well as those sympathizing with introducing Haskell somewhere.

Nick
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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Doralicio
These problems are critical -- but not hopeless, I think:

(1) A simple technical matter, any average Haskell programmer (including myself...) can build a platform, e.g. in Happstack or the like, to clear this up (given you want to do this in Haskell ;-).

(4) This is a special one, which I have pondered on some time ago. The customers' main concern seems to be "will this company still support me in n years??"
o   if the project is interesting enough, I see hope there might be some academic unit willing to partake in this, as I have heard enough complaint of not having enough examples to demonstrate business relevance to students. Normally, the customer should have no problem in believing an academic unit and its interests to last some time.
o   I would propose to pick up the insourcing concept -- as, what I can confirm by my own teaching experiences, it sometimes is easier to introduce Haskell to beginners (once the do have sufficient OS experience) then to people who already are adherents of some other language. Ok, we might need some more introductory literature etc.

(3) Yes, there seem to be lots of people organized at a smaller level than what I described -- groups of one or very few members, working on a limited time range.

Yesterday, I would have written there should be remarkable interest in greater projects, but, due to the poor resonance to my mail, I feel wary to do so now.

(3)&(2) Such a reserved reaction might indicate many Haskellers are not motivated by the money but by the fame, and -- as the lively succJava thread shows -- what could be greater fame (besides the evaluation of 42) than stealing the Java etc. community just another attractive project? ;-))

Do I go wrong in saying there's a good deal of competitive spirit in the Haskell community interesting in taking claims away of other programming cultures which have grown saturated over the years? And, isn't the this *Haskeller bonus* indicating that doing the step to larger project should not be as hard as for others?

A remaining issue might be a need for some facility to find cooperations and realize synergies -- see (1).

Enough blah-blah. I got one email response (not posted to here) of a highly qualified Haskeller whom I could name two projects which might have interested him in his proximity, 80 miles and 75 miles away (and I do not have so many...). My learning is that a communication platform in this concern might be interesting to at least some of us. There are larger projects possible -- if we pick them up.


All the best,

    Nick


John A. De Goes wrote:

It's very difficult to find information on:

1. How many Haskell developers are out there;
2. What a typical salary is for a Haskell developer;
3. Whether or not the skills of a typical Haskell developer scale to large applications (most Haskell developers are "hobby" Haskellers and have only written tiny to small Haskell apps);
4. How many shops are capable of handling Haskell development & maintenance.

These are the kinds of information one needs to make an informed decision about whether to introduce Haskell into the workplace.

Regards,

John A. De Goes
N-Brain, Inc.
The Evolution of Collaboration

http://www.n-brain.net    |    877-376-2724 x 101

On Sep 28, 2009, at 7:01 AM, Jörg Roman Rudnick wrote:

In the last months, I made the experience it seems difficult to find commercial Haskell developer teams to take responsibility for projects in the range of $ 10.000 - 100.000. The Industrial Haskell Group does not seem to be the appropriate place for this, while harvesting Haskell team at general market places appears to be tedious.

I would be very interested in others' experiences, and inhowfar my opinion is shared that there should be a demand for such a market place, for developer teams as well as those sympathizing with introducing Haskell somewhere.

Nick
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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Alberto G. Corona
Some thoughs:

Most successful languages spread because they are part of a platform which solves an IT problem. C was part of Unix, both brougth CPU independence when this was necessary. Java is part of the Java platform, that brougth OS independence and interoperability at the right time. .Download-execution on the client was also a reason for the initial success of Java in the Internet era.  Javascript is part of the web browser. The .NET languages are part of NET.  Rubi and Pyton came with libraries targeted to Rapid development of Internet applications.

What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?. I think that the mere interest of the ideas in the language is not enough.  Many people will play with Haskell in the spare time, and many of them will be permitted to develop some non critical applications at work. But that is all.  Java was not designed for the Internet but it was re-targeted to it because some needed features where already implemented in Java. Maybe something like that will happen to Haskell.

I think that all the current niches are filled, but new niches  are coming. specially with higher level programming that is made on top of current sorware software infrastructure such are BPM, workflows, more flexible scientific applicatins, creation of  models in business intelligence, as part of ERPs,.Data mining too.  And higuer levels of netwrok communications( for example, Google Wave robots) etc.

About the last point, sometimes a basically identical infrastructure is re-engineered to a higher level, and a new language takes over. For example, the  architecture of many Internet applications in the 80s was client-server based, where C, C++ was the king. This was substituted by  the web architecture with Java because Java was involved in the gradual change by filling the holes of the new architecture.  It could be that in a few years, instead of Web sites people could develop interoperable gadgets for aggregators such are netvibes or IGoogle or, even more radical, robots and gadgets in google Wave. Anyway, for sure, people will think and develop at a higher level.

Financial applications are an example of higher level programming where tasks usually performed by humans are now automatized and there is no or few traditions about that. The need to think at a higher level without being worried by side effects and other details are specially needed in such kind of areas. That's where haskell could have its own niche.

Regards

2009/9/29 Jörg Roman Rudnick <[hidden email]>
These problems are critical -- but not hopeless, I think:

(1) A simple technical matter, any average Haskell programmer (including myself...) can build a platform, e.g. in Happstack or the like, to clear this up (given you want to do this in Haskell ;-).

(4) This is a special one, which I have pondered on some time ago. The customers' main concern seems to be "will this company still support me in n years??"
o   if the project is interesting enough, I see hope there might be some academic unit willing to partake in this, as I have heard enough complaint of not having enough examples to demonstrate business relevance to students. Normally, the customer should have no problem in believing an academic unit and its interests to last some time.
o   I would propose to pick up the insourcing concept -- as, what I can confirm by my own teaching experiences, it sometimes is easier to introduce Haskell to beginners (once the do have sufficient OS experience) then to people who already are adherents of some other language. Ok, we might need some more introductory literature etc.

(3) Yes, there seem to be lots of people organized at a smaller level than what I described -- groups of one or very few members, working on a limited time range.

Yesterday, I would have written there should be remarkable interest in greater projects, but, due to the poor resonance to my mail, I feel wary to do so now.

(3)&(2) Such a reserved reaction might indicate many Haskellers are not motivated by the money but by the fame, and -- as the lively succJava thread shows -- what could be greater fame (besides the evaluation of 42) than stealing the Java etc. community just another attractive project? ;-))

Do I go wrong in saying there's a good deal of competitive spirit in the Haskell community interesting in taking claims away of other programming cultures which have grown saturated over the years? And, isn't the this *Haskeller bonus* indicating that doing the step to larger project should not be as hard as for others?

A remaining issue might be a need for some facility to find cooperations and realize synergies -- see (1).

Enough blah-blah. I got one email response (not posted to here) of a highly qualified Haskeller whom I could name two projects which might have interested him in his proximity, 80 miles and 75 miles away (and I do not have so many...). My learning is that a communication platform in this concern might be interesting to at least some of us. There are larger projects possible -- if we pick them up.


All the best,

    Nick



John A. De Goes wrote:

It's very difficult to find information on:

1. How many Haskell developers are out there;
2. What a typical salary is for a Haskell developer;
3. Whether or not the skills of a typical Haskell developer scale to large applications (most Haskell developers are "hobby" Haskellers and have only written tiny to small Haskell apps);
4. How many shops are capable of handling Haskell development & maintenance.

These are the kinds of information one needs to make an informed decision about whether to introduce Haskell into the workplace.

Regards,

John A. De Goes
N-Brain, Inc.
The Evolution of Collaboration

http://www.n-brain.net    |    877-376-2724 x 101

On Sep 28, 2009, at 7:01 AM, Jörg Roman Rudnick wrote:

In the last months, I made the experience it seems difficult to find commercial Haskell developer teams to take responsibility for projects in the range of $ 10.000 - 100.000. The Industrial Haskell Group does not seem to be the appropriate place for this, while harvesting Haskell team at general market places appears to be tedious.

I would be very interested in others' experiences, and inhowfar my opinion is shared that there should be a demand for such a market place, for developer teams as well as those sympathizing with introducing Haskell somewhere.

Nick
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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Job Vranish
In reply to this post by Doralicio
If there is demand for shops to work on smaller jobs in haskell then I think a having a more specific marketplace/communication platform for haskell work would be very helpful. If there is a perceived demand, supply will soon follow.

- Job

On Tue, Sep 29, 2009 at 5:48 AM, Jörg Roman Rudnick <[hidden email]> wrote:
These problems are critical -- but not hopeless, I think:

(1) A simple technical matter, any average Haskell programmer (including myself...) can build a platform, e.g. in Happstack or the like, to clear this up (given you want to do this in Haskell ;-).

(4) This is a special one, which I have pondered on some time ago. The customers' main concern seems to be "will this company still support me in n years??"
o   if the project is interesting enough, I see hope there might be some academic unit willing to partake in this, as I have heard enough complaint of not having enough examples to demonstrate business relevance to students. Normally, the customer should have no problem in believing an academic unit and its interests to last some time.
o   I would propose to pick up the insourcing concept -- as, what I can confirm by my own teaching experiences, it sometimes is easier to introduce Haskell to beginners (once the do have sufficient OS experience) then to people who already are adherents of some other language. Ok, we might need some more introductory literature etc.

(3) Yes, there seem to be lots of people organized at a smaller level than what I described -- groups of one or very few members, working on a limited time range.

Yesterday, I would have written there should be remarkable interest in greater projects, but, due to the poor resonance to my mail, I feel wary to do so now.

(3)&(2) Such a reserved reaction might indicate many Haskellers are not motivated by the money but by the fame, and -- as the lively succJava thread shows -- what could be greater fame (besides the evaluation of 42) than stealing the Java etc. community just another attractive project? ;-))

Do I go wrong in saying there's a good deal of competitive spirit in the Haskell community interesting in taking claims away of other programming cultures which have grown saturated over the years? And, isn't the this *Haskeller bonus* indicating that doing the step to larger project should not be as hard as for others?

A remaining issue might be a need for some facility to find cooperations and realize synergies -- see (1).

Enough blah-blah. I got one email response (not posted to here) of a highly qualified Haskeller whom I could name two projects which might have interested him in his proximity, 80 miles and 75 miles away (and I do not have so many...). My learning is that a communication platform in this concern might be interesting to at least some of us. There are larger projects possible -- if we pick them up.


All the best,

    Nick



John A. De Goes wrote:

It's very difficult to find information on:

1. How many Haskell developers are out there;
2. What a typical salary is for a Haskell developer;
3. Whether or not the skills of a typical Haskell developer scale to large applications (most Haskell developers are "hobby" Haskellers and have only written tiny to small Haskell apps);
4. How many shops are capable of handling Haskell development & maintenance.

These are the kinds of information one needs to make an informed decision about whether to introduce Haskell into the workplace.

Regards,

John A. De Goes
N-Brain, Inc.
The Evolution of Collaboration

http://www.n-brain.net    |    877-376-2724 x 101

On Sep 28, 2009, at 7:01 AM, Jörg Roman Rudnick wrote:

In the last months, I made the experience it seems difficult to find commercial Haskell developer teams to take responsibility for projects in the range of $ 10.000 - 100.000. The Industrial Haskell Group does not seem to be the appropriate place for this, while harvesting Haskell team at general market places appears to be tedious.

I would be very interested in others' experiences, and inhowfar my opinion is shared that there should be a demand for such a market place, for developer teams as well as those sympathizing with introducing Haskell somewhere.

Nick
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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Curt Sampson-2
In reply to this post by Alberto G. Corona
On 2009-09-29 13:18 +0200 (Tue), Alberto G. Corona  wrote:

> Java is part of the Java platform, that brought OS independence and
> interoperability at the right time. .Download-execution on the client
> was also a reason for the initial success of Java in the Internet era.

I was a die-hard Java hacker from 1999 until some undetermined time in
the early-to-mid-2000s. (I abandoned it more or less completely sometime
around late 2005, if I recall correctly.)

This may be somewhat anecdotal evidence, but I disagree with both
of your statements here. I've rarely known anybody to use Java
cross-platform in a non-trival way, barring a few major GUI-centric
projects such as Eclipse. (I've far more cross-platform use of Haskell
than Java myself.) And I know of nobody who did anything serious with
download-execution of Java.

As an example, Amazon and Google are two fairly large companies that
use Java extensively in their operations, and neither of them make any
significant use of the cross-platform or download-execution abilities of
it. They'd do just as well with a language that had a single compiler
producing only Unix binaries.

> Rubi and Python came with libraries targeted to Rapid development of
> Internet applications.

No, neither originally "came" with that.

Python has never been a big language for web applications (though it's
had a few outstanding successes). It has been the source of some very
good ideas in the web application framework area (Django introduced some
great ideas that were, at best, exceedingly rare when it came out), but
those haven't really caught on. (RoR is still missing a lot of wonderful
stuff from Django. Heck, even my sad Ruby web framework QWeb has more in
certain respects.)

Ruby on Rails arrived more than a decade after Ruby was developed, and
while it's increased the popularity of the language, that's little to
do with Ruby itself. RoR was well described by someone as "the bastard
spawn of a PHP programmer and a Web designer." I posit that "it's
slightly better than PHP, yet still very accessible to PHP programmers"
is the main reason for its popularity.

> What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?.

That may be the wrong question. "Avoid success at all costs" still
rings true to me. A year or so ago I seemed like one of the few on
the haskell-libraries list voting in favour of fixing API problems in
libraries, rather than etching in stone those problems in the name of
backwards compatibility so that we could "become more popular."

Do you really want, in 2020, to look back at the 2010 revision of the
Haskell standard and think, "we entrenched things that for a decade
everybody agreed was dumb"?

I can tell you, even when you're a Java enthusiast, there's nothing
more depressing than looking at java.util.Date and thinking, "That
should have been immutable, but it's going to be mutable for the rest of
eternity. We will never fix that."

But let's try this again:

> What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?.

Become more stupid.

Is that a better answer? I'm not just a geek; I do marketing too (this
is what happens when you start your own company), and if you asked me,
using the utmost of my technical knowledge and marketing skills, to make
Haskell popular, this is what I'd recommend.

(I suppose it's a sign of my professionalism that to do this would
nearly break my heart, but if you wanted me to tell you the best way to
do this, and I couldn't tell you to get lost, that's what I'd say.)

> Many people will play with Haskell in the spare time, and many of them
> will be permitted to develop some non critical applications at work.
> But that is all.

Hm. So I suppose that this options trading system I'm working on, which
is the sole way our business makes money and is entirely written in
Haskell, doesn't actually exist.

> I think that all the current niches are filled, but new niches  are coming.

Haskell already has a good niche. In fact, a brilliant one. We have
a whole bunch of academics doing truly wonderful stuff (imagine the
world without monads!--thank you Philip Wadler (and Eugenio Moggi))
that the rest of us (relatively) dumb idiots can use to make our lives
better. We've got several very good implementations of the language,
one of which is a truly shit-hot compiler[1]. And we can use that to do
commercial applications quite comfortably[2].

My personal opinion is, yes, let's let Haskell stick to the niche where
it's great, but it changes so fast that it's scary to everybody else. To
echo Paul Graham, I'm extremely happy to see my competition use Java.

[1] Like that's so important. Ruby's standard implementation to this day
is an interpreter that implements all the popular extensions and has a
reasonably decent FFI. In Haskell-land, we call that "Hugs." It's only
because we have GHC as well that we can look down on Hugs; in the Ruby
(and Python, and PHP) worlds, they're saying that interpreters are just
fine for all sorts of "enterprise applications."

[2] (Warning: self-promotion): http://www.starling-software.com/misc/icfp-2009-cjs.pdf

> Financial applications are an example of higher level programming
> where tasks usually performed by humans are now automatized and there
> is no or few traditions about that. The need to think at a higher
> level without being worried by side effects and other details are
> specially needed in such kind of areas. That's where haskell could
> have its own niche.

Actually, I think that Haskell has a niche there not because of that
sort of thing, but merely because it's better than Java at doing what
Java does well, but scary enough that only small groups of brave
people who are comfortable with risk would ever attempt to use it. The
financial sector happens to have a lot more of those than many others.

cjs
--
Curt Sampson       <[hidden email]>        +81 90 7737 2974
           Functional programming in all senses of the word:
                   http://www.starling-software.com
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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Doralicio
In reply to this post by Alberto G. Corona
Alberto G. Corona wrote:
Most successful languages spread because they are part of a platform which solves an IT problem. C was part of Unix, both brougth CPU independence when this was necessary. Java is part of the Java platform, that brougth OS independence and interoperability at the right time. .Download-execution on the client was also a reason for the initial success of Java in the Internet era.  Javascript is part of the web browser. The .NET languages are part of NET.  Rubi and Pyton came with libraries targeted to Rapid development of Internet applications.
What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?. I think that the mere interest of the ideas in the language is not enough.  Many people will play with Haskell in the spare time, and many of them will be permitted to develop some non critical applications at work. But that is all.  Java was not designed for the Internet but it was re-targeted to it because some needed features where already implemented in Java. Maybe something like that will happen to Haskell.

I think that all the current niches are filled, but new niches  are coming. specially with higher level programming that is made on top of current sorware software infrastructure such are BPM, workflows, more flexible scientific applicatins, creation of  models in business intelligence, as part of ERPs,.Data mining too.  And higuer levels of netwrok communications( for example, Google Wave robots) etc.
I see one additional driver: Once a programming language community grows saturated, its members tend to become fastidious, 'sales people' enter the scene -- look at such Java etc. programmers proud to tell how much money they are making. This impacts the goal structure, 'success' becomes more important than 'doing interesting work' -- in consequence the spectrum of engagement narrows.

IMHO, many customers just aren't involved into the language issue, just wanting to get things done -- getting the better conditions, they would not hesitate to adopt Haskell.

John Hudak (e.g. see his book) proposed Haskell to be appropriate for the niche of for multimedia programming -- in fact, nowadays Anygma.com (see www.nazooka.com) is active in exactly this field, some quote from their side being interesting.

At least, it is quite funny that Haskell (together with Clean & Mercury) after having long to struggle with exactly this issue, now can present the deepest understanding (by Monad & Co.)  of IO, concurrency, state stransitions and the like, so for the future, there might be a grain of truth in it.

All the time, I am astound in how so few people achieve so much in producing Haskell code! Keeping in mind that there are lots of semiautomatic quality assurance techniques, for which -- though having weaknesses in IDE's and refactoring browsing (how about the Portland hackathon?) -- in some parts (e.g. QuickCheck) plays a leading role.

To me, Haskell seems to have proved one very important thing: To have emancipated programming from the highly industrialized mass production process focused upon huge organization and their hierarchy pyramids (with, usually, the coder at its base). It emancipated code (== Haskell (, although not Coq)) to serve as highest level of intellectual presentation -- what I want to say is people have some joy in expressing their special knowledge in a Haskell library.

I am very interested what will happen if the parcours of competition will change from massively repeated but principally simple processes (shops, business portals, communities, maybe even ERP...) to less repetitive structures -- and inhowfar non-functional programming will become a pain then -- is that what you mean?
About the last point, sometimes a basically identical infrastructure is re-engineered to a higher level, and a new language takes over. For example, the  architecture of many Internet applications in the 80s was client-server based, where C, C++ was the king. This was substituted by  the web architecture with Java because Java was involved in the gradual change by filling the holes of the new architecture.  It could be that in a few years, instead of Web sites people could develop interoperable gadgets for aggregators such are netvibes or IGoogle or, even more radical, robots and gadgets in google Wave. Anyway, for sure, people will think and develop at a higher level.
Financial applications are an example of higher level programming where tasks usually performed by humans are now automatized and there is no or few traditions about that. The need to think at a higher level without being worried by side effects and other details are specially needed in such kind of areas. That's where haskell could have its own niche.
This reminds me of the whole agent thing -- pretty much dominated by Java (e.g., Jade, Jason, Jack) nowadays --, for which I would bet lots things are done more straigthforward using Haskell -- especially those parts the Java coders are usually proud of... Let's maybe speak of *second order scalability*:

As first order scalability would rather be a matter in space time load increased by repetitions, the concern of second order scalability would be more about a *fractal* expansion of concepts like a *closure* -- Haskell, already in a vivid exchange with interactive theorem proving (e.g. Coq adopts type classes from Haskell and dependent types vice versa) seems excellently prepared... :-)

I ever tended to say financial applications are especially prone to be boring -- the prototype of repetitive IT, even for strategy the stupid 'traffic lights cockpits' or OLAP(!) ... But this problem is rather supply driven to me.

Going into business with Haskell means two things to me:

o   communication: To many Haskellers this will mean going to people they just would not have met otherway and finding out inhowfar it's possible to build up a constructive relationship with those. This is emphasized for instance by the *XP / agile process* which harmonizes very well with Haskell.

o    experience: Once having begun, I bet Haskellers -- and the Haskell code base -- will learn at a fast pace. Outing myself, I admit I am using tools like HaRe, Yi, Leksah & the Eclipse plugin too seldom to allow my self doing contributions. Once these tools are in stronger use I expect them to evolve at a very fast pace.

Under the bottom line, entering the medium sized project market with Haskell should be regarded as a matter of months, not years. ;-)


All the best,

    Nick


Regards

2009/9/29 Jörg Roman Rudnick <[hidden email]>
These problems are critical -- but not hopeless, I think:

(1) A simple technical matter, any average Haskell programmer (including myself...) can build a platform, e.g. in Happstack or the like, to clear this up (given you want to do this in Haskell ;-).

(4) This is a special one, which I have pondered on some time ago. The customers' main concern seems to be "will this company still support me in n years??"
o   if the project is interesting enough, I see hope there might be some academic unit willing to partake in this, as I have heard enough complaint of not having enough examples to demonstrate business relevance to students. Normally, the customer should have no problem in believing an academic unit and its interests to last some time.
o   I would propose to pick up the insourcing concept -- as, what I can confirm by my own teaching experiences, it sometimes is easier to introduce Haskell to beginners (once the do have sufficient OS experience) then to people who already are adherents of some other language. Ok, we might need some more introductory literature etc.

(3) Yes, there seem to be lots of people organized at a smaller level than what I described -- groups of one or very few members, working on a limited time range.

Yesterday, I would have written there should be remarkable interest in greater projects, but, due to the poor resonance to my mail, I feel wary to do so now.

(3)&(2) Such a reserved reaction might indicate many Haskellers are not motivated by the money but by the fame, and -- as the lively succJava thread shows -- what could be greater fame (besides the evaluation of 42) than stealing the Java etc. community just another attractive project? ;-))

Do I go wrong in saying there's a good deal of competitive spirit in the Haskell community interesting in taking claims away of other programming cultures which have grown saturated over the years? And, isn't the this *Haskeller bonus* indicating that doing the step to larger project should not be as hard as for others?

A remaining issue might be a need for some facility to find cooperations and realize synergies -- see (1).

Enough blah-blah. I got one email response (not posted to here) of a highly qualified Haskeller whom I could name two projects which might have interested him in his proximity, 80 miles and 75 miles away (and I do not have so many...). My learning is that a communication platform in this concern might be interesting to at least some of us. There are larger projects possible -- if we pick them up.


All the best,

    Nick



John A. De Goes wrote:

It's very difficult to find information on:

1. How many Haskell developers are out there;
2. What a typical salary is for a Haskell developer;
3. Whether or not the skills of a typical Haskell developer scale to large applications (most Haskell developers are "hobby" Haskellers and have only written tiny to small Haskell apps);
4. How many shops are capable of handling Haskell development & maintenance.

These are the kinds of information one needs to make an informed decision about whether to introduce Haskell into the workplace.

Regards,

John A. De Goes
N-Brain, Inc.
The Evolution of Collaboration


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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Doralicio
SORRY... it's *far after midnight* here... of course: Paul Hudak:

    http://cs-www.cs.yale.edu/homes/hudak-paul/


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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Ketil Malde-5
In reply to this post by Curt Sampson-2
Curt Sampson <[hidden email]> writes:

>> Java is part of the Java platform, that brought OS independence and
>> interoperability at the right time. .Download-execution on the client
>> was also a reason for the initial success of Java in the Internet era.

> This may be somewhat anecdotal evidence, but I disagree with both
> of your statements here. I've rarely known anybody to use Java
> cross-platform in a non-trival way, barring a few major GUI-centric
> projects such as Eclipse. (I've far more cross-platform use of Haskell
> than Java myself.) And I know of nobody who did anything serious with
> download-execution of Java.

Well I (dis)agree with you both :-)

I think these things - running Java programs in the browser, and
cross-platformness - were very important in making Java popular, even if
they ended up being, at best, peripheral uses of the language.  Still,
they served to hype the language to an industry that had just gotten
used to object orientation, and thus clearing the path for Java's
adoption as a successor to C++ (where it was and is quite successful).

-k
--
If I haven't seen further, it is by standing in the footprints of giants
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Fwd: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Alberto G. Corona
In reply to this post by Curt Sampson-2

Curt,


2009/9/29 Curt Sampson <[hidden email]>

On 2009-09-29 13:18 +0200 (Tue), Alberto G. Corona  wrote:

> Java is part of the Java platform, that brought OS independence and
> interoperability at the right time. .Download-execution on the client
> was also a reason for the initial success of Java in the Internet era.

I was a die-hard Java hacker from 1999 until some undetermined time in
the early-to-mid-2000s. (I abandoned it more or less completely sometime
around late 2005, if I recall correctly.)

This may be somewhat anecdotal evidence, but I disagree with both
of your statements here. 

Of course, I´m not talking about real advantages of Java or any PL. I told about the reasons that people used at the time to introduce the language in the mainstream, either is desirable this for haskell or not. I think it is.  Nobody consider the runtime download of Java code important nowadays. Not even the cross-platform features. but it was marketeed at his time as such.
 
> Rubi and Python came with libraries targeted to Rapid development of
> Internet applications.

No, neither originally "came" with that.
 
Rubi and Pyton came into existencie without their internet libraries, but they would´nt be popular without them. Although I conffess I don´t know the history in detail.

 
> What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?.

That may be the wrong question. "Avoid success at all costs" still
rings true to me. A year or so ago I seemed like one of the few on
the haskell-libraries list voting in favour of fixing API problems in
libraries, rather than etching in stone those problems in the name of
backwards compatibility so that we could "become more popular."


Said above. We have different goals.

 
Do you really want, in 2020, to look back at the 2010 revision of the
Haskell standard and think, "we entrenched things that for a decade
everybody agreed was dumb"?

I see no problem in haskell having both. experimental and fixed versions. Haskell 2020 for you and me and haskell 2010   for my commercial code. Both woukd ve maintained and enriched by far more people. 

I can tell you, even when you're a Java enthusiast, there's nothing
more depressing than looking at java.util.Date and thinking, "That
should have been immutable, but it's going to be mutable for the rest of
eternity. We will never fix that."

But let's try this again:

> What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?.

Become more stupid.

Is that a better answer? I'm not just a geek; I do marketing too (this
is what happens when you start your own company), and if you asked me,
using the utmost of my technical knowledge and marketing skills, to make
Haskell popular, this is what I'd recommend.

Become more stupid may mean "give exactly what the people want" that transaltes to be more stable, give libraries, platforms etc. That is not a extra effor. that will come naturally as more people use the language. some people is naturally more abstract. some are more practical.
 
(I suppose it's a sign of my professionalism that to do this would
nearly break my heart, but if you wanted me to tell you the best way to
do this, and I couldn't tell you to get lost, that's what I'd say.)

> Many people will play with Haskell in the spare time, and many of them
> will be permitted to develop some non critical applications at work.
> But that is all.

Hm. So I suppose that this options trading system I'm working on, which
is the sole way our business makes money and is entirely written in
Haskell, doesn't actually exist.

Congratulations.!! 
 
> I think that all the current niches are filled, but new niches  are coming.

Haskell already has a good niche. In fact, a brilliant one. We have
a whole bunch of academics doing truly wonderful stuff (imagine the
world without monads!--thank you Philip Wadler (and Eugenio Moggi))
that the rest of us (relatively) dumb idiots can use to make our lives
better. We've got several very good implementations of the language,
one of which is a truly shit-hot compiler[1]. And we can use that to do
commercial applications quite comfortably[2].

Right. ;)
 
My personal opinion is, yes, let's let Haskell stick to the niche where
it's great, but it changes so fast that it's scary to everybody else. To
echo Paul Graham, I'm extremely happy to see my competition use Java.

[1] Like that's so important. Ruby's standard implementation to this day
is an interpreter that implements all the popular extensions and has a
reasonably decent FFI. In Haskell-land, we call that "Hugs." It's only
because we have GHC as well that we can look down on Hugs; in the Ruby
(and Python, and PHP) worlds, they're saying that interpreters are just
fine for all sorts of "enterprise applications."

[2] (Warning: self-promotion): http://www.starling-software.com/misc/icfp-2009-cjs.pdf

> Financial applications are an example of higher level programming
> where tasks usually performed by humans are now automatized and there
> is no or few traditions about that. The need to think at a higher
> level without being worried by side effects and other details are
> specially needed in such kind of areas. That's where haskell could
> have its own niche.

Actually, I think that Haskell has a niche there not because of that
sort of thing, but merely because it's better than Java at doing what
Java does well, but scary enough that only small groups of brave
people who are comfortable with risk would ever attempt to use it. The
financial sector happens to have a lot more of those than many others.

 same concept in more plain words. I guess.
cjs
--
Curt Sampson       <[hidden email]>        +81 90 7737 2974
          Functional programming in all senses of the word:
                  http://www.starling-software.com



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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

John A. De Goes

The cross-platform features have been extremely important to the  
success of Java, because they have greatly expanded the number of  
libraries available to developers.

On Haskell Cafe, not a week goes by that Windows (and sometimes Mac)  
developers don't complain about not being able to use some Hackage  
library because of cross-platform issues. The actual number of people  
encountering these issues is orders of magnitude larger than the  
number of posts you see here. These issues impede the growth of  
Haskell significantly.

Moreover, the importance of cross-platform libraries on the Java  
platform is evinced by the fact that developers of major native  
libraries _always_ make their libraries cross-platform (Jogl,  
jmonkeyengine, swt, etc.). They wouldn't go to this trouble if it  
weren't something the community was demanding.

 From a risk management perspective, a manager really likes the  
ability to seamlessly move across platforms and architectures without  
recompilation. 32 -> 64? No problem. Linux -> BSD? Sure, why not? Yes,  
I'm sure even Amazon, Yahoo, and Google make these kinds of  
considerations.

Regards,

John A. De Goes
N-Brain, Inc.
The Evolution of Collaboration

http://www.n-brain.net    |    877-376-2724 x 101

On Sep 30, 2009, at 5:28 AM, Alberto G. Corona wrote:

> Nobody consider the runtime download of Java code important  
> nowadays. Not even the cross-platform features. but it was marketeed  
> at his time as such.

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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Robert Wills-2
fwiw I found it difficult getting a Haskell installation onto Windows.  
Packages that would 'cabal install' just fine on Linux were much more of
a pain on Windows.  Eventually, I actually found it easiest to cross
compile to Windows using wine:

 wine HaskellPlatform-2009.2.0.2-setup.exe
 wine cabal
 wine cabal install yst

The resulting yst.exe seems to work fine on actual Windows machines.  
Quite cool I thought as I prefer to stay in Linux, but if you're
starting from a Windows based development environment, Haskell does seem
problematic.

-Rob


John A. De Goes wrote:

>
> The cross-platform features have been extremely important to the
> success of Java, because they have greatly expanded the number of
> libraries available to developers.
>
> On Haskell Cafe, not a week goes by that Windows (and sometimes Mac)
> developers don't complain about not being able to use some Hackage
> library because of cross-platform issues. The actual number of people
> encountering these issues is orders of magnitude larger than the
> number of posts you see here. These issues impede the growth of
> Haskell significantly.
>
> Moreover, the importance of cross-platform libraries on the Java
> platform is evinced by the fact that developers of major native
> libraries _always_ make their libraries cross-platform (Jogl,
> jmonkeyengine, swt, etc.). They wouldn't go to this trouble if it
> weren't something the community was demanding.
>
> From a risk management perspective, a manager really likes the ability
> to seamlessly move across platforms and architectures without
> recompilation. 32 -> 64? No problem. Linux -> BSD? Sure, why not? Yes,
> I'm sure even Amazon, Yahoo, and Google make these kinds of
> considerations.
>
> Regards,
>
> John A. De Goes
> N-Brain, Inc.
> The Evolution of Collaboration
>
> http://www.n-brain.net    |    877-376-2724 x 101
>
> On Sep 30, 2009, at 5:28 AM, Alberto G. Corona wrote:
>
>> Nobody consider the runtime download of Java code important nowadays.
>> Not even the cross-platform features. but it was marketeed at his
>> time as such.
>
> _______________________________________________
> Haskell-Cafe mailing list
> [hidden email]
> http://www.haskell.org/mailman/listinfo/haskell-cafe
>

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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Justin Bailey
On Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 7:54 AM, Robert Wills <[hidden email]> wrote:
> fwiw I found it difficult getting a Haskell installation onto Windows.
>  Packages that would 'cabal install' just fine on Linux were much more of a
> pain on Windows.  Eventually, I actually found it easiest to cross compile
> to Windows using wine:
>

The only time I have trouble with a Haskell library is when it
requires some foreign library that isn't Windows friendly. HSQL and yi
are two examples I remember from some time ago. However, many
libraries are just fine: HDBC, lhs2tex, hlint, for example.

The Haskell Platform has made this even simpler because I have a
compatible base that I know will work.

Justin
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Fwd: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Alberto G. Corona
In reply to this post by Curt Sampson-2
forwarded to the list:



Curt,

Rubi and Pyton came into existencie without their internet libraries, but they would´nt be popular without them. Although I conffess I don´t know the history in detail.

Academics is not mainstream. 

2009/9/29 Curt Sampson <[hidden email]>

On 2009-09-29 13:18 +0200 (Tue), Alberto G. Corona  wrote:

> Java is part of the Java platform, that brought OS independence and
> interoperability at the right time. .Download-execution on the client
> was also a reason for the initial success of Java in the Internet era.

I was a die-hard Java hacker from 1999 until some undetermined time in
the early-to-mid-2000s. (I abandoned it more or less completely sometime
around late 2005, if I recall correctly.)

This may be somewhat anecdotal evidence, but I disagree with both
of your statements here. 

Of course, I´m not talking about real advantages of Java or any PL. I told about the reasons that people used at the time to introduce the language in the mainstream, either is desirable this for haskell or not. I think it is.  Nobody consider the runtime download of Java code important nowadays. Not even the cross-platform features. but it was marketeed at his time as such.
 
> Rubi and Python came with libraries targeted to Rapid development of
> Internet applications.

No, neither originally "came" with that.
 
Rubi and Pyton came into existencie without their internet libraries, but they would´nt be popular without them. Although I conffess I don´t know the history in detail.

 
> What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?.

That may be the wrong question. "Avoid success at all costs" still
rings true to me. A year or so ago I seemed like one of the few on
the haskell-libraries list voting in favour of fixing API problems in
libraries, rather than etching in stone those problems in the name of
backwards compatibility so that we could "become more popular."


Said above. We have different goals.

 
Do you really want, in 2020, to look back at the 2010 revision of the
Haskell standard and think, "we entrenched things that for a decade
everybody agreed was dumb"?

I see no problem in haskell having both. experimental and fixed versions. Haskell 2020 for you and me and haskell 2010   for my commercial code. Both woukd ve maintained and enriched by far more people. 

I can tell you, even when you're a Java enthusiast, there's nothing
more depressing than looking at java.util.Date and thinking, "That
should have been immutable, but it's going to be mutable for the rest of
eternity. We will never fix that."

But let's try this again:

> What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?.

Become more stupid.

Is that a better answer? I'm not just a geek; I do marketing too (this
is what happens when you start your own company), and if you asked me,
using the utmost of my technical knowledge and marketing skills, to make
Haskell popular, this is what I'd recommend.

Become more stupid may mean "give exactly what the people want" that transaltes to be more stable, give libraries, platforms etc. That is not a extra effor. that will come naturally as more people use the language. some people is naturally more abstract. some are more practical.
 
(I suppose it's a sign of my professionalism that to do this would
nearly break my heart, but if you wanted me to tell you the best way to
do this, and I couldn't tell you to get lost, that's what I'd say.)

> Many people will play with Haskell in the spare time, and many of them
> will be permitted to develop some non critical applications at work.
> But that is all.

Hm. So I suppose that this options trading system I'm working on, which
is the sole way our business makes money and is entirely written in
Haskell, doesn't actually exist.

Congratulations.!! 
 
> I think that all the current niches are filled, but new niches  are coming.

Haskell already has a good niche. In fact, a brilliant one. We have
a whole bunch of academics doing truly wonderful stuff (imagine the
world without monads!--thank you Philip Wadler (and Eugenio Moggi))
that the rest of us (relatively) dumb idiots can use to make our lives
better. We've got several very good implementations of the language,
one of which is a truly shit-hot compiler[1]. And we can use that to do
commercial applications quite comfortably[2].

Right. ;)
 
My personal opinion is, yes, let's let Haskell stick to the niche where
it's great, but it changes so fast that it's scary to everybody else. To
echo Paul Graham, I'm extremely happy to see my competition use Java.

[1] Like that's so important. Ruby's standard implementation to this day
is an interpreter that implements all the popular extensions and has a
reasonably decent FFI. In Haskell-land, we call that "Hugs." It's only
because we have GHC as well that we can look down on Hugs; in the Ruby
(and Python, and PHP) worlds, they're saying that interpreters are just
fine for all sorts of "enterprise applications."

[2] (Warning: self-promotion): http://www.starling-software.com/misc/icfp-2009-cjs.pdf

> Financial applications are an example of higher level programming
> where tasks usually performed by humans are now automatized and there
> is no or few traditions about that. The need to think at a higher
> level without being worried by side effects and other details are
> specially needed in such kind of areas. That's where haskell could
> have its own niche.

Actually, I think that Haskell has a niche there not because of that
sort of thing, but merely because it's better than Java at doing what
Java does well, but scary enough that only small groups of brave
people who are comfortable with risk would ever attempt to use it. The
financial sector happens to have a lot more of those than many others.

 same concept in more plain words. I guess.
cjs
--
Curt Sampson       <[hidden email]>        +81 90 7737 2974
          Functional programming in all senses of the word:
                  http://www.starling-software.com



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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Alberto G. Corona
In reply to this post by Doralicio

This reminds me of the whole agent thing -- pretty much dominated by Java (e.g., Jade, Jason, Jack) nowadays --, for which I would bet lots things are done more straigthforward using Haskell -- especially those parts the Java coders are usually proud of... Let's maybe speak of *second order scalability*:

As first order scalability would rather be a matter in space time load increased by repetitions, the concern of second order scalability would be more about a *fractal* expansion of concepts like a *closure* -- Haskell, already in a vivid exchange with interactive theorem proving (e.g. Coq adopts type classes from Haskell and dependent types vice versa) seems excellently prepared... :-)

Interesting. I´m working in something like second order scalability. Instead of brute performance by  redundancy,  high speed networks and fast disks, scalability can be achieved by looking at the properties of the data. 

I ever tended to say financial applications are especially prone to be boring -- the prototype of repetitive IT, even for strategy the stupid 'traffic lights cockpits' or OLAP(!) ... But this problem is rather supply driven to me.

For sure. This is supply driven. There are a lack of new ideas mainly because the technology is low level and obsolete.
 

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Portability of libraries.

Curt Sampson-2
In reply to this post by John A. De Goes
On 2009-09-30 07:16 -0600 (Wed), John A. De Goes wrote:

> The cross-platform features have been extremely important to the success
> of Java....

> Moreover, the importance of cross-platform libraries on the Java  
> platform is evinced by the fact that developers of major native  
> libraries _always_ make their libraries cross-platform....

Hm. It is interesting to note, then, that Ruby, which has worse
cross-platform support than Haskell[1], is yet still quite popular,
orders of magnitude more so than Haskell.

So while that portability may have helped Java, it doesn't seem required
to become popular.

[1] I've ported a fair amount of both Ruby and Haskell code from Unix
to Windows, so I think I have a pretty good handle on the the relative
portability of both.

cjs
--
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Re: Fwd: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Curt Sampson-2
In reply to this post by Alberto G. Corona
On 2009-09-30 21:27 +0200 (Wed), Alberto G. Corona  wrote:

> > Do you really want, in 2020, to look back at the 2010 revision of the
> > Haskell standard and think, "we entrenched things that for a decade
> > everybody agreed was dumb"?
>
> I see no problem in haskell having both. experimental and fixed versions.
> Haskell 2020 for you and me and haskell 2010   for my commercial code. Both
> woukd ve maintained and enriched by far more people.

If so, why hasn't this happened with Haskell98?

>  Become more stupid may mean "give exactly what the people want" that
> transaltes to be more stable, give libraries, platforms etc.

Not entering the mainstream seems a small price to pay to avoid this fate.

Haskell has pretty nice niche right now that it's filling very well;
emptying this nich to move into competition for other niches that
already have languages filling them seems to me bad for everybody all
around.

I suspect that main hope a lot of Haskell promoters have (certainly this
is mine) is not that more people do what they do now but in Haskell, but
people do things in the better ways that Haskell allows. In other words,
we don't want to move into the mainstream, we want the mainstream to
come over here.

And as far as something like dealing with a changing language and
libraries, the mainstream already has well-established and popular
techniques for doing just: agile development. If anything, the FP
community could be learning from them on this score. So in some of your
marketing ideas, you're actually marketing to a problem that has better
solutions already in the mainstream.

cjs
--
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Re: Market Place for Haskell development teams?

Curt Sampson-2
In reply to this post by Curt Sampson-2
On 2009-09-29 13:18 +0200 (Tue), Alberto G. Corona  wrote:

> What is the vehicle that haskell can use to enter the mainstream?.

Actually, I have one more thought on that: wait.

I'd had the impression that Haskell was becoming fairly well known (if
not yet heavily used, in comparison to languages like Java), but I just
ran across some hard evidence for this.

In the 32 languages ranked on http://www.langpop.com/ , Haskell
consistently comes down near the bottom in the various rankings of
use. (But hey, we're not so weird we're not in there!) But if you look
down near the bottom, at the chart labeled "Normalized Discussion Site
Results," you'll notice that Haskell comes out sixth. Even trying to be
more fair to the mainstream, and changing the weighting to drop Lambda
the Ultimate completely (after all, they're just a bunch of academic
wankers, right?) and bring IRC down to a contribution of 0.5 instead of
1 (apparently those academic wankers have lots of time to chat online),
Haskell still comes out tenth, with a score over a third that of the
leader, Java, and close to half that of PHP and C (2nd and 3rd place,
respectively).

We've also got at least one undeniably good, production-quality compiler
(which is more than PHP or Ruby can say), and have sold many tens of
thousands, perhaps even hundreds of thousands, of books. At this point,
I don't think many people (John A. De Goes excepted) are looking at
people writing major applications in Haskell as if they're aliens living
on another planet.

Haskell is in the mainstream already as far as being taken seriously;
most of the complaints I'm seeing seem to be grasping at the same kinds
of straws that the anti-Java guys were back in the late '90s. ("It's
hopeless if it uses garbage collection.")

We've even got our own over-hyped, under-utilized supposed benefit
("it's good for multicore").

The main whinging seems to be about libraries, of which we have "only"
1585 on hackage.

Compare with RubyForge, which has 2059 projects in "beta" or better
status, or 2961 if we include "alpha" as well. The Ruby Application
Archive has 1768 projects; I have no idea how much overlap there is, or
how many of these are real.

I think we just need to sit tight for a couple of years.

cjs
--
Curt Sampson       <[hidden email]>        +81 90 7737 2974
           Functional programming in all senses of the word:
                   http://www.starling-software.com
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