Broken documentation on Hackage.

Malcolm Wallace malcolm.wallace at
Mon Jan 6 10:27:21 UTC 2014

On 5 Jan 2014, at 10:15, Mateusz Kowalczyk wrote:

> It seems that we are having a rather big issue with Hackage in recent
> months and I'm sure many of you have noticed: a lot of packages aren't
> getting their docs built. As far as I can tell, there can be multiple
> reasonable causes:
> * Dependencies fail to build so your package does
> * Your package fails to build directly
> * Your package requires non-cabal libraries which aren't installed
> * Your package requires different version of install libraries

I think the fundamental problem is that Haddock is now built on top of ghc.  So if a package cannot be built by ghc (for whatever reason, e.g. missing C library dependency), then it cannot be documented either.  This is a good deal less than useful.  A documentation generator ought to do a reasonable job, even if the code it is looking at is technically not-compilable.

At work, we have a stand-alone documentation generator for Haskell, which requires no compiler.  Haddock also was once stand-alone.  I think it might be time to wind the clock backwards and retrieve this desirable property.


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