[Haskell-cafe] Requesting Feedback: I Love Haskell, but can't find a place to use it

Ivan Perez ivanperezdominguez at gmail.com
Thu May 31 16:41:10 CEST 2012

On 31 May 2012 01:30, Jonathan Geddes <geddes.jonathan at gmail.com> wrote:
> I love Haskell. It is my absolute favorite language. But I have a very hard
> time finding places where I can actually use it!
This has been bugging me for years and, like you, I think we ought to
lean towards web-pages and mobile devices.

Yesod has been a tremendous push forward in this direction but, as you
already stated, the browser and android devices remain mostly
unexplored in Haskell. Here's my bit:

- There's a port of ghc for iphone.
- There's frege (http://code.google.com/p/frege/), a non-strict, pure,
functional programming language in the spirit of Haskell.
- I've been working as a freelance developer for some time now. I
focus on desktop apps in Haskell. I can't say I'm overwhelmed by the
amount of offers (speaking of which, if anyone needs a freelance
haskell developer,... ahem), but this area will not be clinically
"dead" as long as we cannot use web applications knowing (99% sure)
that the owner of the website cannot use our personal information for
any purpose other than giving us our service. There's only two kinds
of clients here, though: those that explicitly want Haskell, and those
than don't care about the programming language. Otherwise, you'll have
to sell Haskell and, personally, I'm not that good a salesman (10%
success, tops).
- I've also ported Haskell designs to other programming languages
(with small adaptations). I only found this cost-effective because the
code in Haskell was not going to be thrown away.

Good luck. Please, let us know what you find.


> I had hoped that compiling Haskell to C with -fvia-C (or would it be just
> -C?) would allow Haskell to run in new, uncharted territory such as Android
> (with NDK), IOS, Google's NaCl, etc. But today I learned that GHC's C
> backend has been deprecated!  Is it more difficult than I am imagining to
> get Haskell to work in these environments? Is it simply a matter of low
> interest in this kind of work? Or something more fundamental? Am I missing
> something?
> I'm hoping that the Haskell->JavaScript efforts will mature enough to make
> Haskell viable for client-side web apps. (I think the first sign of this
> will be a self-hosting Haskell->JavaScript compiler.)
> I use Haskell for Server-Side code with various web frameworks, but over the
> years more and more of the app logic is moved into client-side JavaScript,
> leaving the server-side code as little more than a simple validation and
> security layer over the database and other services. Haskell doesn't have
> any trouble with this, of course, but it's not exactly a role where it can
> shine. (Of course this is not true of ALL server-side code, just the kind of
> apps I have been writing.)
> So anyway I'd like to request feedback: where can I use Haskell besides
> simple CLI utilities, dull server code, or project Euler problems? Even if
> it's just to contribute to getting Haskell in the environments mentioned
> above, any feedback is welcome!
> Thanks for reading,
> --J Arthur
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