[Haskell-cafe] Re: Haskell not ready for Foo [was: Re: Hypothetical Haskell job in New York]

Thomas Hallgren hallgren at altocumulus.org
Thu Jan 8 09:13:02 EST 2009

On 2009-01-08 12:10, Achim Schneider wrote:
> Manlio Perillo<manlio_perillo at libero.it>  wrote:
>> Unfortunately Haskell is not yet ready for this task.
> Could you -- or someone else -- please elaborate on this?

I think Haskell is ready for a lot more than most people think. How about an 
operating system in Haskell, for example? I think House shows that it could be done.


> I've heard it once in the context of a webbrowser, the reason given was
> that ghc doesn't deallocate memory, that is, the gc heap only
> increases. I doubt it'd be hard to fix,

Even if the GHC RTS doesn't return unused heap memory to the operating system, I 
don't see why this would prevent you from implementing a useful web browser in 

As a comparison, my Firefox process currently uses 717MB of memory. I usually 
restart Firefox every day to bring the memory use down to a reasonable level. 
The situation would probably be the same if I used a browser implemented in Haskell.

Incidentally, I did implement a web browser in Haskell back in the 90s, and it 
worked fine :-) But that was before JavaScript and CSS, so it would take some 
work to make it useful on the web of today...


Thomas Hallgren

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