Type design question

Andrew J Bromage ajb@spamcop.net
Tue, 29 Jul 2003 12:10:49 +1000

G'day all.

On Mon, Jul 28, 2003 at 03:42:11PM +0200, Konrad Hinsen wrote:

> What is the general attitude in the Haskell community towards 
> compiler-specific extensions? My past experience with Fortran and C/C++ tells 
> me to stay away from them. Portability is an important criterion for me.

There is no ISO standard Haskell.  There is Haskell 98, but that was
deliberately designed to be a simpler language than what came before
it, with no experimental features, partly to make teaching the language
easier.  (You can't write a textbook for a moving target.)

The situation with Haskell today is somewhat analogous to C++ _during_
its standardisation process, when people were proposing all kinds of
proposed language features (exceptions spring to mind as one example)
which not everyone supported and some supported incompletely.  As
others have noted, using features which are almost certainly going to
end up in the next "official" standard is a pretty safe bet, because
your code will work everywhere eventually.

Andrew Bromage