[Haskell-cafe] Haskell for Accessibility

Kirsten Chevalier catamorphism at gmail.com
Tue Mar 6 16:28:03 EST 2007

On 3/6/07, Tom Hawkins <tomahawkins at gmail.com> wrote:
> I love programming in Haskell, yet even its concise expressions have
> not saved my tendons from chronic RSI.  Has anyone put any thought
> into building an accessible Haskell development interface for those
> who may not be able to use a keyboard?
> One inspirational program is Dasher
> (http://www.inference.phy.cam.ac.uk/dasher/).  Not only is it godsend
> for people with a wide range of disabilities, Dasher is also a lot of
> fun to use.

There's also the Harmonia project:
which has the advantage of being a programming-language specific
project. From their web page:
"Harmonia is an open, extensible framework for constructing
interactive, language-aware programming tools. ....Program source code
is represented by annotated abstract syntax trees augmented with
non-linguistic material such as whitespace and comments. The analysis
engine can support any textual language that has formal syntactic and
semantic specifications. ...New languages can be easily added to
Harmonia by giving the system a syntactic and semantic description,
which is compiled into a dynamically loadable extension for that
language. Among the languages for which descriptions exist are Java,
Cool (a teaching language), XML, Scheme, Cobol, C, and C++. Other
languages are being added to Harmonia as resources permit."

So adding a Haskell module might not be difficult. They also have a
recent paper on voice-recognition-based input for programming

I haven't actually used Harmonia myself, but I know some of the people
who've been involved, and as a fellow RSI sufferer, I'd also love to
see these tools get wider exposure.


Kirsten Chevalier* chevalier at alum.wellesley.edu *Often in error, never in doubt
"I broke my watch when I put up my calendar / I left my map on the
roof of my car / I need somebody to make it seem worth it / To search
for a light switch or reach for a star" -- Dom Leone

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