newbie question re linear algebra in Haskell

Keith Wansbrough
Tue, 19 Nov 2002 10:14:12 +0000

> I'm a complete newcomer to Haskell, having learned about only recently.
> I'm intrigued by the possibility of  in using it for numerical
> applications, specifically linear algebra.  I understand that (at least
> in its present state) Haskell 98 isn't competitive with imperative
> languages when it comes to primitive matrix-vector operations, which
> often rely on destructive updating.  It strikes me that one approach
> that takes advantage of the strengths of both paradigms would be create
> an imperative subsystem to handle primitive operations, then create a
> functional matrix algebra layer on top of it.

One thing that comes to mind is Barry Jay's FISh language:

This compiles code in a functional language with arrays down to C, by using "shape inference" to fix the size of all the arrays.

I believe FFTW (the Fastest Fourier Transform in the West) similarly uses a functional programming language to generate imperative (C) code.

--KW 8-)
Keith Wansbrough <>
University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory.