[Haskell-beginners] Does haskell have to have values?

Patrick Lynch kmandpjlynch at verizon.net
Wed Mar 23 22:34:54 CET 2011


I'm going thru RWH [Real World Haskell] too...
I'm finding it to be an excellent way to learn Haskell. I prefer it to the 
Computer Scientist geared books that I'm also reading...
I also found "Learn You a Haskell for Great Good!" to be very worthwhile - 
I've ordered a copy of it and it should be availble at the end of April, see 
I found a link for RWH too - it is: 

BTW: I'm also an independent software consultant -- been doing it for 30+ 

As for your question, I'm not, as yet, prepared to answer it...but it seems 
to me that 'Sections' and 'Currying' are very important in the study of 
Haskell...but I'm still in 'newbie' status...

I tried to install TK on my Windows Vista PC but was unable to do so...I 
will try it again, using RWH - if you're heading there too, please let me 
know - perhaps we can work this together...

I also took a look at Category Theory books but so far I'm stumped with it - 
it's starting to make a bit of sense but I don't know if I'll be able to 
link it to Haskell...

Good luck to both of us...

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Mike Meyer" <mwm at mired.org>
To: "Haskell Beginners List" <beginners at haskell.org>
Sent: Wednesday, March 23, 2011 4:17 PM
Subject: [Haskell-beginners] Does haskell have to have values?

> I'm working my way through Real World haskell, and so far have found
> the experience quite pleasant (though the harder exercises seem to
> require things net yet covered).
> Among the comments in the IO chapter was a discussion of whether or
> not some monad was or was not a function, which got me thinking.
> Values in haskell aren't evaluated until they're needed. They're
> implemented as thunks, meaning they're roughly zeroadic functions that
> will return the value when called.
> The syntax of the language seems to make treating values as zeroadic
> functions that return the value in question a reasonable
> interpretation as a degenerate case:
> (+)     accepts two arguments and returns their sum.
> (+ 5)   accepts one argument and returns that plus 5.
> (3 + 5) accepts zero arguments and returns 8.
> or (more pedantically):
> (+)     accepts one argument and returns a function that accepts one
>        argument and returns a zeroadic function that returns the
>        value of the sum of the two arguments.
> (+ 5)   accepts one argument and returns a zeroadic function that ...
> (3 + 5) a zeroadic function that returns 8
> So the question is - is there any advantage or harm in this way of
> looking at values?
>       Thanks,
>       <mike
> -- 
> Mike Meyer <mwm at mired.org> http://www.mired.org/consulting.html
> Independent Software developer/SCM consultant, email for more information.
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