[Haskell-cafe] haskellwiki and Project Euler

Yitzchak Gale gale at sefer.org
Sun Feb 24 17:36:56 EST 2008

Project Euler is excellent, lots of fun, and rewarding.
Thanks to Daniel and all the other members of the team.

Project Euler problems, by their nature, also happen
to be excellent material for teaching and learning Haskell.
Having various solutions to them on the wiki is a
valuable resource for the Haskell community, in my
opinion. Even without the universal quantifiers.

I agree that the best way to get the most benefit out of
Project Euler itself is by following the rules. So I admit to
having added some prominent "spoiler warning" wrappers to
the "Euler Problems" wiki pages some time ago. I haven't
looked there in a while, I hope they're still there. They
help those who want to "do it right" to avoid ruining it
for themselves.

Here are some use cases for Project Euler solutions
posted to our wiki:

1. Haskell newcomers who have already solved the
problems in their (former) favorite language. They'll
be _amazed_ when they see it in Haskell!

2. People who have already solved a problem in
Haskell, and want to see other Haskell solutions
concentrated in one place. Often the forum is
difficult to use in that way.

3. Someone who is using a certain specific problem
for learning to program in Haskell, and has
decided to trade the chance for full enjoyment of
the problem as a Project Euler problem for the
chance for advancement in learning Haskell.
I'm not sure I would recommend that, but it is a
choice that people are free to make, and
appropriate for our wiki if they should so decide.

I am opposed to allowing non-Haskell solutions
on our wiki, except when they are clearly needed for
comparison in order to make a point about Haskell.
General discussions about Project Euler solutions
should go elsewhere, like anything else off-topic.

As for those who want to intentionally cheat - they are
only hurting themselves. As others have pointed out,
there are plenty of other places out there to do it.
If those people think they will earn themselves any
respect that way, I think they are naive. I don't
feel that we should allow them to prevent _us_ from
benefiting just because they decided to do that to

So the bottom line is, in my opinion:

o Of course, material that infringes on copyrights
  or licenses must go.
o Non-infringing solutions in Haskell, when wrapped
  in appropriate spoiler warnings, further the cause of
  Haskell without causing any significant damage
  to Project Euler. They should therefore remain.
o Solutions having nothing to do with Haskell are off-topic
  and should not be on our wiki.

I hope this position admits the possibility of a
continued amicable relationship with the Project Euler


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