[Haskell-cafe] Re: [Haskell] ANNOUNCE: binary: high performance, pure binary serialisation

Neil Davies semanticphilosopher at googlemail.com
Fri Jan 26 12:41:07 EST 2007

existing ecoding system - both the BER (Basic Encoding Rules) and the
PER (Packed Encoding Rules).

If you are looking to target a well supported standard - this would be the one.


On 26/01/07, Malcolm Wallace <Malcolm.Wallace at cs.york.ac.uk> wrote:
> Tomasz Zielonka <tomasz.zielonka at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Did you consider using an encoding which uses variable number of
> > bytes? If yes, I would be interested to know your reason for not
> > choosing such an encoding. Efficiency?
> My Binary implementation (from 1998) used a type-specific number of bits
> to encode the constructor - exactly as many as needed.  (If you were
> writing custom instances, you could even use a variable number of bits
> for the constructor, e.g. using Huffman encoding to make the more common
> constructors have the shortest representation.)
> The latter certainly imposes an extra time overhead on decoding, because
> you cannot just take a fixed-size chunk of bits and have the value.  But
> I would have thought that in the regular case, using a type-specific
> (but not constructor-specific) size for representing the constructor
> would be very easy and have no time overhead at all.
> Regards,
>     Malcolm
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