[Haskell-cafe] Unnecessarily strict implementations
jac at informatik.uni-kiel.de
Thu Sep 2 18:22:14 EDT 2010
On 02.09.2010, at 13:41, Daniel Fischer wrote:
> takes a little to run and keeps the entire file until the first
> of pat in memory.
first of all thanks very much for the detailed instructions.
I have rewritten the example slightly using Strings instead of
Bytestrings. Replacing all occurrences of 'ä' by "ä" in the
collected works of Shakespeare ; ) has a maximum memory usage of
around 65MB with the current implementation of intersperse while it
has a maximum memory usage of only around 5KB with the less strict
replaceBy :: Eq alpha => alpha -> [alpha] -> [alpha] -> [alpha]
replaceBy x sep = concat . intersperse sep . splitBy (==x)
splitBy :: (alpha -> Bool) -> [alpha] -> [[alpha]]
splitBy _  = 
splitBy p xs =
case break p xs of
(l,ys) -> l : case ys of
 -> 
(_:zs) -> splitBy p zs
This function only runs in constant space if I use the strict pattern
matching on the result of break. If I use the following implementation
I observe a linear memory usage instead.
splitBy' :: (alpha -> Bool) -> [alpha] -> [[alpha]]
splitBy' _  = 
splitBy' p xs =
l : case ys of
 -> 
(_:zs) -> splitBy' p zs
(l,ys) = break p xs
I think this is due to the Wadler tuple space leak. The same would
apply to the current implementation of lines. I wonder whether an
implementation of lines analogous to splitBy has any disadvantages.
>> That is, we could have
>> intersect  _|_ =  and intersect (_|_:_|_)  = 
>> intersect  (_|_:_|_) =  and intersect _|_  = 
>> and the current implementation satisfies neither.
> Right. So the question is, has the current implementation advantages
> either of these? (I don't see any.) If not, which of these two
> is preferable?
I'd prefer the first one as it is in line with the left to right
pattern matching of Haskell.
> I have mixed feelings about those. Part of me dislikes breaking the
> symmetry between (<=), (==) and compare.
I think you should not blame (<=) for the existence of a function that
yields a superset of the information that (<=) yields ; )
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