Will Haskell be commercialized in the future?

Manuel M. T. Chakravarty chak@cse.unsw.edu.au
Wed, 29 Nov 2000 16:22:48 +1100

Adrian Hey <ahey@iee.org> wrote,

> On Mon 27 Nov, Fergus Henderson wrote:
> >  Do you think that Haskell would be better without `unsafePerformIO'?
> Well, a sceptic like me is bound to wonder why such a non-function is
> provided in a purely functional language. What really worries me is
> that the damage isn't localised. If you allow such things you can never be
> sure that any function really is a function, without careful scrutiny of all
> the code it's dependent on.

Consider `unsafePerformIO' to be a feature to implement
system libraries and the like.  It makes it easier to
implement libraries in Haskell which otherwise partially or
completely would have to be written in another language and,
then, be called from Haskell.

Like with any system library if the system programmer messes
it up (eg, exports a function that isn't really a function),
you are in for some trouble.  This is not very different to
you trusting the interpreter or compiler implementer that
what they execute is actually what you wrote.