[Haskell-cafe] Haskell participating in big science like CERN Hadron....

Neil Davies semanticphilosopher at googlemail.com
Sat Oct 4 07:19:13 EDT 2008


Too late to get in on that act - that software was designed over the  
last 10/15 years implemented and trailed over the last 5 and being  
tuned now.

But all is not lost, Haskell is being used! Well in least in helping  
ATLAS people understand how to the data acquisition system performs  
(and interacts) - its what the stochastic performance algebra language  
being used to capture behavioural models is written in.


On 3 Oct 2008, at 20:38, Don Stewart wrote:

> wchogg:
>> On Fri, Oct 3, 2008 at 5:47 AM, Dougal Stanton <dougal at dougalstanton.net 
>> > wrote:
>>> 2008/10/3 Galchin, Vasili <vigalchin at gmail.com>:
>>>> Hello,
>>>>    One of my interests based on my education is "grand challenge  
>>>> science".
>>>> Ok .. let's take the  CERN Hadrian Accelerator.
>>>>    Where do you think Haskell can fit into the CERN Hadrian effort
>>>> currently?
>>>>    Where do you think think Haskell currently is lacking and will  
>>>> have to
>>>> be improved in order to participate in CERN Hadrian?
>>> Is that the experiment where Picts are accelerated to just short of
>>> the speed of light in order to smash through to the Roman  
>>> Empire? ;-)
>>> I don't know what the main computational challenges are to the LHC
>>> researchers. The stuff in the press has mostly been about
>>> infrastructure --- how to store the gigabytes of data per second  
>>> that
>>> they end up keeping, out of the petabytes that are produced in the
>>> first place (or something).
>> Well, with the LHC efforts I don't think a technology like Haskell
>> really has a place...at least not now.  Even just a few years back,
>> when I worked on this stuff, we were still doing lots of simulation  
>> in
>> preparation for the actual live experiment and Haskell might have  
>> been
>> a good choice for some of the tools.  All of the detector simulation
>> was written in C++, because C++ is the new FORTRAN to physicists, and
>> you ain't seen nothing till you've seen a jury-rigged form of lazy
>> evaluation built into a class hierarchy in C++.  Now, would the C++
>> based simulation have run faster than a Haskell based one?  Quite
>> possibly.  On the other hand, I remember how many delays and problems
>> were caused by the sheer complexity of the codebase.  That's where a
>> more modern programming language might have been extremely helpful.
> How about EDSLs for producing high assurance controllers, and other
> robust devices they might need. I imagine the LHC has a good need for
> verified software components...
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