[Haskell-cafe] size of Haskell Platform
blake.rain at gmail.com
Sun Nov 11 22:51:22 CET 2012
I love it when people explain things or make a point using a relevant story
(or parable) :)
It reminds me of when Michael Abrash would start his articles with the
same. Ah, the memories...
On 11 Nov 2012 17:00, "Doug McIlroy" <doug at cs.dartmouth.edu> wrote:
> This note is an offshoot of "curl package broken in Windows",
> where this item appeared:
> > Did you know that Strawberry Perl includes a cygwin gcc?
> > ...
> > Maybe Haskell Platform could do the same.
> The suggestion brought to mind a true-life parable: the pump
> station at Tok. (Tok is the third corner--after Anchorage
> and Fairbanks--of Alaska's triangular core of long-distance
> highways.) When I visited Tok long ago, it was a village of
> several hundred souls, almost all of whom were employed by one
> government agency or another, principal among which were the
> highway department, the Alaska Communication Service and the
> pump station, which kept fuel flowing to Eielson Air Force Base.
> The mission of the station was to keep one pump running 24 hours
> a day. Most of the time, of course, the pump hummed along by
> itself. To assure that, there had to be a standby machine,
> an operator to watch over both, and a mechanic who could fix
> them if need be. For such a lonely job it was deemed well to
> have two operators. And there had to be two operators for each
> of several shifts. A little redundancy on the mechanical side
> seemed wise, too. The crew and their families, say nothing of
> the pumps themselves, needed to be housed, and the installation
> needed to be supplied with the necessities of life. (The nearest
> supermarket was in Fairbanks, 300 miles away.) These needs
> demanded a motor pool and property maintenance cadre, whose
> very presence reinforced the need.
> Thus the support team to keep one pump going ballooned to about
> 100 people--a chain reaction that barely avoided criticality.
> So it seems to be with Haskell Platform, which aims to include
> "all you need to get up and running"--"an extensive set of
> standard libraries and utilities with full documentation." I
> get the impression that the Platform is bedeviled by the
> same prospect of almost unfettered growth.
> [One ominous sign: the description of the Haskell Platform
> at lambda.haskell.org/platform/doc/current/start.html suggests
> that one must join some mysterious Cabal, whose nature is
> hidden by a link to nowhere, simply to get started.]
> What principles guide the selection of components for "all
> you need to get up and running"?
> Doug McIlroy
> Haskell-Cafe mailing list
> Haskell-Cafe at haskell.org
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