Module system, was Re: GHC source code improvement ideas

Johannes Waldmann waldmann at
Sat Jan 5 17:28:16 EST 2008

Hash: SHA1

Brian Hulley wrote:

> In the long term, Haskell needs a better module system IMHO [...] 

I agree with the symptoms that were described, but I draw a different

We don't need to change the language - we need better tools (IDEs)
that operate not at the textual level, but use the annotated syntax tree,
including knowledge on fully qualified names and types.

E.g. Java requires to write full package names everywhere,
but this is never a problem when working with Eclipse (or any other
modern IDE I assume)
since it just knows how to rename a package or move a class etc.

Try moving some Haskell functions/declarations by hand (e.g. with Emacs)
into a different, or a new module. It's a nightmare until you get all
the imports
and qualified usages right. But it really is conceptually simple,
so it should be a one-click operation.

Since it's this time of the year, here's my wish for 2008: a version of
HaRe (Haskell Refactorer)
that knows current ghc language extensions *and is integrated with Eclipse*

The way to go seems this:
and I dearly hope there will be more progress on that.

Best regards, Johannes Waldmann, Leipzig.

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