[Haskell-cafe] Why Perl is more learnable than Haskell

Will Newton will.newton at gmail.com
Wed Apr 11 09:21:41 EDT 2007

On 4/11/07, kynn <kynnjo at gmail.com> wrote:
> Perl is a large, ugly, messy language filled with quirks and eccentricities,
> while Haskell is an extremely elegant language whose design is guided by a
> few overriding ideas.  (Or so I'm told.)
> Based on this one would think that it would be much easier to learn Haskell
> than to learn Perl, but my experience is exactly the opposite.

I've been trying to learn Haskell for some time also, and I've learnt
lots of various other languages in the past. I think one of the
biggest problems is if there is a considerable learning curve, which
Haskell undoubtedly has, there's a nagging question in the back of
your head while you try and get a simple task accomplished in an
unfamiliar language - "why am I bothering with this, I could do it in
5 minutes in Perl/Python/Ruby/...!".

And for many simple tasks Perl is a really good fit - it's best to
find a task that plays to Haskell's strengths so you get a bit of
positive reinforcement while you work. I have been working with Parsec
to do some parsing recently and I can definitely recommend it. I don't
think I've used such a capable and easy to use parsing framework in
any language and it's really kept me going with Haskell where I might
have "just done it in Python" in the past.

More information about the Haskell-Cafe mailing list