[Haskell-cafe] Mutable data design question

Jason Bailey azrael at demonlords.net
Fri Dec 3 14:34:43 EST 2004

I'm going to take by your replies that you've never worked for a major 
corporation. :)

Thats okay. Cause unless you've really been in the grind of their 
operations it can seem irrational from the outside

I'm giving examples of the difficulties that would be faced in 
attempting to get managers to agree to the use of the haskell language. 
You mentioned the fact that there is a school in Europe that teaches this.

Now I live in America, which is probably why I'm not familiar with that 
Institution - I'm sure it's a good one. But I'm not sure how to convey 
how little impact that that information would have on a discussion I 
would be having with my management.

Most companies when it comes to their internal IT avoid the cutting edge 
like the plague. They want solid, well proven solutions, not the hot new 
wave of the future. They also want it in a 
protocol/language/specification that is well known so that they don't 
have to pay a premium for the employees. Because the nature of the 
business world is to pay as little as possible in the hopes of acquiring 
somone who is just barely competent enough to do the work they require.

This may seem jaded, its because I am. I would love to see the better 
technology win out in the end but that very rarely happens.

For me to convince my management to introduce Haskell. I would have to 
have the following (at a minimum occur)

1) I would be able to point to multiple consulting firms that offer 
locally available training courses for different skill sets.

2) There would need to be support from the existing engineers/architects 
who have taken the time on their own behalf to familiarize themselves 
with the language.

3) Write ups in IT based business articles promoting Haskell.

3) There would need to be known commercial products that fit our needs 
that's written in Haskell to both demonstrate its usefullness and 
provide the internal demand for the language.

As a side note I googled for consulting firms that trained people in 
Haskell. I found one -
http://www.reid-consulting-uk.ltd.uk based out of the UK. So I'm going 
to say thats theres probably a better chance of getting Haskell embedded 
in a british IT dept because of this.

But as a comparison. When I googled for the same type of training for 
Python. I got  quite literally hundreds of different firms many of them 
able to provide training locally to my location.

Maybe there is a need for a Haskell Advocacy project. A Website covering 
why Haskell is a good choice and a central location to obtain 
information and suggestions on getting Haskell implemented at a business.


Keean Schupke wrote:

> Jason Bailey wrote:
>> No offense but those are just catch phrases. They can support a 
>> justification but won't work as a justification in its own right.
>> Here are some questions that I would expect to get from business.
>> Q:"What have I heard about this technology?"
>> A: Probably nothing. Haskell isn't very well known in the programming 
>> community (out of 6 co-workers asked, one had used Haskell in a 
>> single college class), let alone the business community. Business has 
>> become very wary about accepting technologies that are obscure.
> At Imperial College (top european science and technology university) 
> all DOC undergradutes taught Haskell as
> main teaching language - so no shortage of top-quality trained 
> graduates...
>> Q:"What can I do with this language that I can't do now?"
>> A:Well nothing. It can certainly do some things better then the 
>> current languages out there, but its just another general purpose 
>> language.
> Get static guarantees that a program won't crash... programs can be 
> buffer-overflow proof (list based strings)
> and more reliable
>> Q:"Will it require training?"
>> A: Oh yes, we're talking about a different way of looking at 
>> programs. On the surface level it should be fairly easy to pick up 
>> but it will take some time before the engineers are able to produce 
>> decent work. Oh and there are no training classes we can send people 
>> to. They will have to learn on their own.
> See answer to 1
>> Q:"Whats the market like for Haskell programmers?"
>> A: Well there isn't one. Which means that if business was going to 
>> advertise for someone with haskell programming knowledge they are 
>> going to end some spending a premium on them.
> See answer to 1
>> Q:"Why should we support yet another programming language?"
>> A: Because this is a better language. (Wouldn't work as an answer but 
>> I would give it a try. )
> Its not yet another programming language - it's the future and you 
> don't want to be left behind...
> Keean.

More information about the Haskell-Cafe mailing list