[Haskell-cafe] [ANN] Laborantin: experimentation framework

lucas di cioccio lucas.dicioccio at gmail.com
Mon Dec 23 09:27:15 UTC 2013

Dear all,

I am happy to announce Laborantin. Laborantin is a Haskell library and DSL
running and analyzing controlled experiments.

Repository: https://github.com/lucasdicioccio/laborantin-hs
Hackage page: http://hackage.haskell.org/package/laborantin-hs

Laborantin's opinion is that running proper experiments is a non-trivial and
often overlooked problem. Therefore, we should provide good tools to assist
experimenters. The hope is that, with Laborantin, experimenters will spend
time on their core problem while racing through the menial tasks of editing
scripts because one data point is missing in a plot. At the same time,
Laborantin is also an effort within the broad open-science movement. Indeed,
Laborantin's DSL separates boilerplate from the actual experiment
implementation. Thus, Laborantin could reduce the friction for code and

One family of experiments that fit well Laborantin are benchmarks with
setup and teardown procedures (for instance starting, configuring, and
remote machines). Analyses that require measurements from a variety of data
points in a multi-dimensional parameter space also fall in the scope of

When using Laborantin, the experimenter:

* Can express experimental scenarios using a readable and familiar DSL.
  This feature, albeit subjective, was confirmed by non-Haskeller
* Saves time on boilerplate such as writing command-line parsers or
  encoding dependencies between experiments and analysis results in a
* Benefits from auto-documentation and result introspection features when
  comes back to a project, possibly months or weeks later.
* Harnesses the power of Haskell type-system to catch common errors at
compile time

If you had to read one story to understand the pain points that Laborantin
tries to address, it should be Section 5 of "Strategies for Sound Internet
Measurement" (V. Paxson, IMC 2004).

I'd be glad to take question and comments (or, even better, code reviews and
pull requests).

Kind regards,
--Lucas DiCioccio (@lucasdicioccio on GitHub/Twitter)
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