[Haskell-cafe] Why GHC is written in Happy and not a monadic parser library?

Roman Cheplyaka roma at ro-che.info
Sun Aug 4 10:53:11 CEST 2013

* Malcolm Wallace <malcolm.wallace at me.com> [2013-08-04 09:33:22+0100]
> On 3 Aug 2013, at 21:03, Jason Dagit wrote:
> > Another con of using parsec that I forgot to mention in my previous
> > email is that with Parsec you need to be explicit about backtracking
> > (use of try). Reasoning about the correct places to put try is not
> > always easy and parsec doesn't help you with the task. In my
> > experience, this is the main bug that people run into when using
> > parsec.
> Although the original question did not mention parsec explicitly, I
> find it disappointing that many people immediately think of it as the
> epitome of monadic combinator parsing.  The power of good marketing,
> eh?  There are so many other good parsing libraries out there.  Parsec
> happened to cure some known space-leaks in rival libraries about the
> time of its release (2000 or so), but the main reason it is popular is
> simply because it was distributed alongside ghc for a long time.

I would also add to this a catchy and well-marketed name, which is often
used as a generic name for a parser combinator library.


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