[Haskell-cafe] a regressive view of support for imperative programming in Haskell

Donn Cave donn at drizzle.com
Wed Aug 8 14:56:03 EDT 2007

On Wed, 8 Aug 2007, Paul Hudak wrote:
> Well, you could argue, monad syntax is what really made Haskell become 
> more accepted by the masses, and you may be right (although perhaps 
> Simon's extraordinary performance at OSCOM is more of what we need).  On 
> the other hand, if we give imperative programmers the tools to do all 
> the things they are used to doing in C++, then we will be depriving them 
> of the joys of programming in the Functional Way.  How many times have 
> we seen responses to newbie posts along the lines of, "That's how you'd 
> do it in C++, but in Haskell here's a better way...".

It seems to me that Brian Hulley threw the glove down hard.  Does
pure functional Haskell offer a better way to write a GUI?

I love the functional stuff myself, but if real applications depend
on extensive imperative logic, we're best served by a language that
cheerfully embraces the inevitable and handles it well.  Monads, the
do syntax, whatever it takes (I have a soft spot for O'Haskell, but
alas I must be nearly alone on that.)  Hopefully, it's still better,
and not at all irreconcilable with the Functional Way.

	Donn Cave, donn at drizzle.com

(That's a genuine question, by the way - my attempt to build a
current Haskell GUI library on NetBSD foundered and I have no
experience with Haskell GUI coding, but it's on the list of things
I would like to look at.  So if there's one that really illustrates
the virtues of pure functional Haskell programming, that would be
a welcome tip!)

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