[Haskell-cafe] OT - targeting many systems

Carter Schonwald carter.schonwald at gmail.com
Mon Jan 13 21:39:01 UTC 2014

mark, have you seen ghcjs? It uses the ghc pass hooks to provide a JS
targeting backend for full GHC haskell.
I imagine you could reuse some of that work to cook up GHC backends for
other systems like JVM too!

NB: depending on the target, you may want to take over from GHC after core
or after CMM, depending on the system in mind.https://github.com/ghcjs/ghcjs

On Mon, Jan 13, 2014 at 4:15 PM, Marc Weber <marco-oweber at gmx.de> wrote:

> I love Haskell, and it gets many things right.
> However eg its hard to target JS in an efficient way.
> Sometimes I just need a quick and dirty (somewhat typesafe)
> program which gets the job done - sometimes its js, sometimes a tool in
> console, sometimse web/client code (also smartphone applets).
> haxe.org comes close, but while the language is fun to use it still has
> some shortcomings - and sometimes I hit unexpected bugs.
> The real question I have is:
> - Haskell is cool
> - being lazy is cool
> - having OO is cool (because you can target Java/Flash/.. easily)
> - how to get best of all worlds?
> So I think about creating my own language is should look like more like
> a source code generator than language which contains different sub
> universes. The idea is to code some parts - such as a parser - in a
> Haskell like dialect, then reuse it in quick and dirty OO world (Java
> like).
> Of course additional targets could be just plain old C, because C++ is
> known to be very complex - and there are tons of legacy code which
> should be maintained (such as Vim) - but there is no true upstream,
> because coding C takes so much more time.
> I also just don't get why it should not be possible to write code once
> (such as parsing snippets or highlighting), then reuse it for Vim,
> Emacs, Yi, ..
> There is no way, you cannot merge such editors - but eventually there is
> a way to "code once" and compile down to elisp, C, Haskell ...
> Live is too short to duplicate much work ..
> I'm writing to this mailinglist because the knowledge in the Haskell
> community is incredible - and I want to know
> * who would join such an effort (maybe write drafts, get funded by
>   kickstarter)
> * does such attempt already exist ?
> Languages like impredicative.com/ur, Haskell, lisp, Java, Haxe cleary
> also illustrate
> the power of "meta programming" or "source code generation at compile
> time", yet they all come with their own limitations, eg ur cannot create
> generate code which is useful outside of a web server and so on.
> So I feel I'm reinventing the wheel again and again - I'd like to stop
> this.
> So the goal would be trying to write "functors/code" which you can
> instantiate with different memeory management models, tell to target
> different backends etc.
> I love Haskell, its community and what it achieved, but somehow I feel
> that its only 80% of the true story getting everything done.
> Eg haxe already allows me to write code like such - and then compile it
> twice: once to create a .js file, once to create server side
> js/php/neko/whatsoever.
>   class FormComponentGeoLocation {
>    new (opts){
>     this.opts = opts;
>    }
>   function check(value){
>     // check with regular expression that value has lat lon numbers
>   }
>   #if SERVER
>     function assignValuesFromInputs(post_data, values){
>      var value = post_data[opts.name];
>      check(value);
>      values[opts.name] = post_data[opts.name];
>     }
>   #end
>   #if js
>     additional client code
>     eg use geo location apis to fill in lat/lon
>     function assignValuesFromInputs(values);
>        var value = post_data[opts.name];
>        check(value);
>        values[opts.name] = value;
>      }
>   #end
>   }
> So this is what I'd call modular code I can reuse which has all logic it
> needs.
> While Haskell is great I'm unsure wether it allows me to create modules
> by code (I know about template haskell, but that's only about adding
> code) - and while being lazy is a feature sometimes I'd like to be
> strict. (I know that people work on simplifying this)
> ideas/thougts/links/you'd like to join understanding whether such a
> goal would be reachable at all?
> Marc Weber
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> Haskell-Cafe at haskell.org
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