[Haskell-beginners] for those who wondered where I was...
mpm at alumni.caltech.edu
Tue Jun 22 07:03:55 EDT 2010
I started to learn Haskell last year when I wanted a better language to
implement a computer-assisted music composition system. As GUI-heavy, it
proved too much of a challenge... learning a new paradigm (functional
programming), trying to deal with GUI libraries and their documentation
shortcomings, and dealing with my actual problem on top of that proved
I went back to Python.
However, after a time I reassessed my reason for writing any of this
code in the first place. I realized it made more sense to put my
available time into ear-training in order to make the meat computer
between my ears into a better composition system, rather than
In the meantime, some smaller programming tasks came up (non-gui) and I
started on them a few weeks ago, writing in Python. This involves
translating a MusicXML document into a midi file, applying some custom
algorithms I've written to provide greater expressive qualities.
The first Python challenge was to parse the document. I am not aware of
a MusicXML-specific Python module, so I used their more general XML code.
It took me a few weeks to get a basic input system working. I.e.
MusicXML documents translated into my own representation, and reasonable
Then I thought, what the heck am I doing? This is a good task for
Haskell! It was only the GUI challenge that turned me off to Haskell
last year, but this program is smaller and is purely file-in file-out.
Working with Haskell tonight, in about four hours I replicated several
weeks of Python work. Yup, this is the right approach.
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