[Haskell-cafe] RE: Definition of the Haskell standard library

Sven Panne sven.panne at aedion.de
Sat Sep 1 12:47:15 EDT 2007

On Tuesday 31 July 2007 19:39, Duncan Coutts wrote:
> [...]
> The docs for those packages would be available for packages installed
> via cabal (assuming the user did the optional haddock step) and would
> link to each other.

Well, on a normal Linux distro a user should *never* have to call cabal (or 
any of its cousins) directly, the distro's package manager should be the used 
instead. On an e.g. RPM system, the .spec file would use Cabal to e.g. 
(un-)register a package, because RPM has to know what is installed, which 
other packages are prerequisites, how to cleanly uninstall, etc. IMHO Cabal 
should not try to mirror a full-fledged package system, simply because on 
every (non-Windows ;-) platform there are tons of native tools for this 
purpose, and Cabal is not "in the driver's seat" when it comes to SW 

> What is missing from the local docs is a single integrated index page
> that lists all the modules and then links off to the various packages's
> docs like we have on the ghc website.
> The problem with generating one of those is what manages it? What
> package would it belong to etc.

Of course we are not the first project to face this kind of problem: Texinfo 
offers a central contents page as well. To maintain this page, it comes with 
a tool "install-info", which updates the index page after (de-)installation. 
On RPM systems, the .spec file calls install-info after (de-)installation of 
a package with info pages.


> On some systems (windows, gnome) there are dedicated help viewers that
> can help with this contents/index issue. haddock supports both (mshelp,
> devhelp). I'm not sure everyone would find that a sufficient solution
> however.

A "install-haddock" tool would be the solution IMHO.


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