[Haskell-cafe] Can Haskell outperform C++?

wren ng thornton wren at freegeek.org
Sat May 19 07:57:20 CEST 2012

On 5/16/12 7:43 AM, Yves Parès wrote:
>> On the one hand, characterizing those who desire the best performance
>> possible as "simple-minded" is, at best, a gross over-generalization. Like
>> you, I work in a field where optimization is king (e.g., in machine
>> translation, program runtimes are measured in days).
> You misread the logical implication, Ertugrul said:
>> simple-minded people often have a desire to get the best performance
>> possible

For the record, I was replying to Ryan's response to Ertugrul, rather 
than to Ertugrul directly. I make no claims about what Ertugrul said or 
the (in)validity thereof.

However, while the "logical" interpretation of Ertugrul's words may be 
that simple-mindedness implies performance-desire, that interpretation 
is not the only one available to the standard interpretation of his 
words, nor IMO the dominant interpretation. It is equally valid to 
interpret them as saying that the people under discussion are 
simpletons, and that those people desire the best performance possible. 
(I.e., an attributive rather than restrictive reading of the adjective.) 
This latter interpretation is perfectly valid ---as the semantics of the 
utterance---, but is pejorative of the people under discussion; and that 
pejoration is what Ryan was (fairly) calling Ertugrul out on.

While I think it was fair for Ryan to call Ertugrul out on the matter, I 
also thought the subject warranted further discussion since the 
pejorative claim comes from somewhere, and so dismissing it entirely 
fails to address the underlying issue. Not that I think Ryan was 
dismissing it outright, just that it would be easy to interpret his 
words as doing so.

Live well,

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