[Haskell-cafe] What's the deal with Clean?

wren ng thornton wren at freegeek.org
Tue Nov 3 21:26:35 EST 2009

Stephen Tetley wrote:
> 2009/11/3 Andrew Coppin <andrewcoppin at btinternet.com>:
>> As far as I can tell, Clean is to Haskell as C is to Pascal. I.e., Clean is
>> notionally very similar to Haskell, but with lots of added clutter,
>> complexity and general ugliness - but it's probably somehow more
>> machine-efficient as a result.
>> (All of which makes the name "Clean" rather ironic, IMHO.)
> Ouch - you really could put it the other way round.

Part of this really comes down to how one feels about the monads vs 
uniqueness types argument. It's a silly argument to have since the ideas 
are orthogonal and only really intersect at IO, but there's history 
there which lead to the current state of things.

Sometimes in Haskell I've thought about how uniqueness typing would make 
something faster, but in general all the plumbing associated with it in 
Clean makes me feel like I'm writing systems-level code (i.e. C, asm) 
instead of using a high-level language. The extra plumbing really makes 
it feel dirtier to work with. That doesn't mean Clean is bad, but I 
think it does contribute to the "cluttered" feeling Haskellers get.

But as I said, it's a silly argument and folks should use whichever 
gives them warm fuzzies. I also have a vague unnameable distaste 
whenever working with Python, and rather enjoy working with Perl. 
Nobody's perfect :)

Live well,

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