[Haskell-cafe] wxHaskell for Haskell Platform 2011.2.0.1

Eric Kow eric.kow at gmail.com
Wed Jun 15 20:16:15 CEST 2011

Hi all,

With green light from maintainer Jeremy O'Donoghue, I've uploaded a
trivial update to wxHaskell, relaxing the dependencies so that it builds
with the latest Haskell Platform and does not try to install other
versions of packages.

What is wxHaskell?
wxHaskell is a Haskell library for writing GUIs that work on multiple

It provides a reasonable compromise between getting a native user
interface and saving effort.  It uses the wxWidgets library, which in
turn wraps around the native GUI toolkit for the target platform and
tries to follow platform-specific customs and conventions so that you
don't have to worry about them.  Here are the sort of results the minor
details wxWidgets seems to get right on Mac OS X:

 - system preferences are under the Preferences menu for the application
 - file open/save and print dialogues are the actual ones used by Mac
   applications instead of some half-baked Aqua coloured monstrosity

It may not be perfect, but it's not bad considering you don't even
have to think about it.

wxHaskell is available under a relaxed LGPL license, which basically
means you can release both open sourced and closed source with it.

About this release
This is just a minor release bumping some dependencies.

Installation comes in two basic steps:

1. Install wxWidgets 2.8

   - On MacOS X, Homebrew works well for me (if you update to get patches
     to build wxWidgets with Unicode enabled).
   - On Ubuntu/Debian, I use apt-get wxgtk.
   - I have not personally tried it on Windows, but I've hear reports that
     it's easy to install there as well.

2. cabal install wx

See http://www.haskell.org/haskellwiki/WxHaskell for more information

What's next?
Jeremy has been doing quite a lot of work on wxHaskell.  Among other
things [1], he's been:

- updating it for what will eventually be wxWidgets 3.0
- trying to resolve issues restarting the UI from GHCi
- improved Event handling (for Mac users, the upshot is that
  wxHaskell would work with the wxWidgets that ships with OS X, meaning
  "cabal install wx" from the HP would "just work")

There are also mutterings about pushing for inclusion in the Haskell
Platform, but there is still a lot of work of to do before we get there
[2]. Help wanted :-)



[1] http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.comp.lang.haskell.wxhaskell.devel/612
[2] http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.comp.lang.haskell.wxhaskell.devel/616 

Eric Kow <http://erickow.com>
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