[Haskell-cafe] Re: Tutorial uploaded

Sebastian Sylvan sebastian.sylvan at gmail.com
Wed Dec 21 10:26:32 EST 2005

On 12/21/05, Wolfgang Jeltsch <wolfgang at jeltsch.net> wrote:
> Am Mittwoch, 21. Dezember 2005 11:48 schrieb Robin Green:
> > [...]
> > If people want Haskell to be treated as a practical language, not just
> > something for doing academic teaching and research with, it should be
> > taught as a practical language - which means that things like IO and
> > space/time usage come to the forefront.
> So programming is only practical if it's deals with a lot of I/O?  This is
> wrong, in my opinion.  Take a compiler.  The only I/O it does is some simple
> file I/O.  The important part of the compiler doesn't deal with I/O at all.

I'm pretty sure that's not what he was saying. But a practical
application need IO.
I'm not saying that only applications doing *lots* of IO should be
considered practical, I'm saying that any real-world stand-alone
application needs *some* IO.

Beginners know that too. In fact, they often think that practical
applications need far more IO than they really do! So to insinuate
even slightly that Haskell is "bad at IO" by avoiding it for two
thirds of a book, is really going to inforce the idea that Haskell
isn't a practical language for practical applications.
It's easily remedied by teaching them a little IO up front (to show
them it's not scary), and then leaving it alone for a while, having a
more thorugough treatment of it later on.


Sebastian Sylvan
UIN: 44640862

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