7.8 Feature window

Austin Seipp aseipp at pobox.com
Tue Aug 20 19:01:25 CEST 2013


GHC 7.8's release is drawing near. We would like to make a release
candidate sometime around ICFP, which will be in late September.
Unfortunately that's just over a month a way, so the clock is ticking!

The tree will need a few weeks of stabilization. After that, we will
release an RC, and likely branch. Then things will roughly return to normal.

The exact date for feature cutoff is not set yet (but I will follow up soon
on this.) So, I'd like a show of hands and a quick 'check in' for
outstanding work for 7.8. There are a few things we know for sure are - or
were - tentatively scheduled for this release:

 * SIMD improvements
 * New Template Haskell
 * Constraint solver for type naturals

These are - as far as I'm aware - the largest outstanding features which
not quite yet in HEAD.

For the release, we would like to minimize 'disruptive' features, because
7.8 already has many large changes. In particular, Dynamic GHCi and dynamic
builds will likely prove the biggest challenge 'in the field', so we would
like plenty of time to stress this as best we can for the RC, and the
release itself.

There are some things which we are fairly certain will not make it:

 * Joachim's new newtype coercion implementation
 * Adam's new record implementation

There are some things I'm not very privvy to perhaps, but could still go in:

 * Nicolas possibly had some optimisation improvements according to Simon.

 * Edsko had a small patch for extended plugin functionality in HEAD, but
Luite and Thomas also have input here. Status is uncertain.

 * ERDI was working on pattern synonyms. I believe you were having some
trouble with the implementation. Can someone help him if necessary?

Finally, there are loose ends to tie off:

 * I believe Simon and Jose were having discussions about the new Typeable
implementation, regarding hand-written instances. This should be fine for
7.8 and is mostly some behavioral tweaking I think.

I've undoubtedly missed things here. Please fill me in. :)

Note that before the freeze, you should interpret 'disruptive' with your
own good judgement. Smaller patches and improvements are certainly welcome
as always, and you shouldn't wait on me to push something if you feel good
about it. If you're ever unsure, just ask. Worst case is something gets
backed out, but it's nothing we cannot come back to.

Austin - PGP: 4096R/0x91384671
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