[ghc-steering-committee] #380 GHC2021: How to proceed?

Simon Peyton Jones simonpj at microsoft.com
Mon Dec 21 19:50:49 UTC 2020

Thanks Joachim

I don't want to force this debate to a conclusion tomorrow.  Many people have stopped work for the Xmas holidays, and just before Xmas is a bad time to declare game over.

As you know, I have found it extremely difficult to make sense of a table with more than 100 rows.  I think we need a global summary and I have prepared one here:

Is it accurate?  I have not cross-checked against the vote table in the last week or two. You all have edit permission for this document.

I suggest we proceed as follows:

* Check the document is up to date (Joachim might you manage to do that?)

* Everyone: check that the union of "in" and "barely in" makes sense as a
  coherent language design

* Everyone: make the case for any changes. But only for borderline cases. No
  point in arguing for something that is nowhere near the borderline, unless
  you really think everyone has misunderstood

I think the period from now to 4 Jan doesn't count. Then we should allow a 
fortnight, say to 18 Jan (my birthday).

Is that acceptable?


| -----Original Message-----
| From: ghc-steering-committee <ghc-steering-committee-bounces at haskell.org>
| On Behalf Of Joachim Breitner
| Sent: 19 December 2020 20:41
| To: ghc-steering-committee at haskell.org
| Subject: Re: [ghc-steering-committee] #380 GHC2021: How to proceed?
| Dear Committee, especially dear Simons,
| when we originally outlined the process for determining what GHC2021 would
| be, we aimed for a four week period of discussion, at the end of which we
| just go with whatever the ballots say.
| That four week period would end next Tuesday.
| Now, maybe unsurprisingly, there are many discussions going on, both about
| concrete extensions and also meta-questions (e.g. should we use
| GHC2021 to spread certain best practices? Can a certain class of users
| expect to not have to turn on other extensions? Do we want to preserve the
| property of some extensions as heralds for a certain kind or style of
| code?).
| This poses the question:
| Should we stick to the process, give everyone a chance to revise their
| votes, and call it a day on Tuesday?
| Or would that just lead to foul compromises, and we should keep debating
| until we have more clarity?
| In favor of sticking to the process:
| We expected that something like GHC2021 will cause lots and lots of
| discussions, many of them related to opinions, and there will likely never
| be a obvious, clear, definite consensus on what the "best"
| GHC2021 is. That's why we set out with a time limit, as picking _some_
| GHC2021 (with plenty of obvious extensions safely in) with reasonable
| effort is better than holding long and very time-consuming discussions
| with diminishing returns. Also, there will be a later iteration to iron
| out the wrinkles that we didn't get to do this round.
| In favor of continuing the discussion:
| The discussion is fruitful and interesting. We (well, certainly I) learned
| a fair bit about the various extensions. Also, discussing the meta-
| questions and coming to an agreement there could help us produce a more
| principled, consistent GHC2021, and maybe even help us understand the
| various purposes and goals of the extensions mechanism beyond GHC2021. And
| if, I mean when, we finish these discussions, we have likely produced a
| "better" GHC2021.
| Personally, I'm leaning towards time-boxing the discussion and concluding
| the vote on Tuesday. That said, if the committee has energy and motivation
| to continue debating, I'm certainly up for that (my next two weeks will be
| relatively quiet, and I might enjoy diving into long discussions - you've
| been warned).
| I think it would be best if the chars make a judgment call as to how we
| should proceed. Simon, Simon: How do you want us to proceed?
| Cheers,
| Joachim
| --
| Joachim Breitner
|   mail at joachim-breitner.de
| https://nam06.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.joach
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