[Haskell-cafe] Haskell Weekly News

Kim-Ee Yeoh ky3 at atamo.com
Fri May 29 16:40:58 UTC 2015

*Top Picks:*

   - Tony Day, Brisbane-based investment strategist and
   high-frequency-trading hacker, rides 100% idiomatic Haskell
   <http://tonyday567.github.io/blog/mvc-todo/> into the Single Page
   (web)-App <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Single-page_application> space.
   How? He spins the GHCJS transpiler on Gabriel Gonzalez's
   Model-View-Controller library to obtain his own TodoMVC benchmark demo
   <http://tonyday567.github.io/static/index-auto.html>. Per GHCJS, the
   production spans multi-megabytes of javascript. Not to be missed: auto-run,
   i.e. click the QuickCheck-powered checkbox labeled "Let haskell do the
   work." Github repo <https://github.com/tonyday567/mvc-todo>.

   Along the way, he discovers how crippled Javascript is without sum
   types. As noted on HN
   <https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9591868#up_9601842>, "Typos and
   missing cases represent a very large set of trivial bugs." He believes
   superior FP features such as sum types makes it "much harder for haskell to
   avoid success." Woe is us. /r/haskell

   - Michael Walker, a Ph.D. student at York, reveals
   his personal book-collection management web-app
   <http://www.barrucadu.co.uk/bookdb/> that runs on top of persistent
   <https://hackage.haskell.org/package/persistent>, WAI
   <https://hackage.haskell.org/package/wai>, and web-routes
   <https://hackage.haskell.org/package/web-routes>. Public domain.

   - David Christiansen announces on /r/haskell
   Idris 0.9.18 <http://www.idris-lang.org/idris-0-9-18-released/> with
   fancier records. Top comment says Idris is more type-friendly than Haskell
   despite the "esoteric academics behind dependent type theory." Why? Because
   Idris, helpfully offers suggestions that turn ill- into well-typed code.
   Haskell doesn't.

   - Remember JP Moresmau dropping EclipseFP
   Can Leksah take its place? Hamish Mackenzie announces a 7.10-ready Leksah
   0.15.0 <https://github.com/leksah/leksah/wiki/Leksah-0.15.0> on
   /r/haskell <http://www.reddit.com/r/haskell/comments/37emp2/leksah_0150/>.
   Top new feature? Support for GHCJS, which excites Phil Freeman of
   PureScript fame. Here's a 2min video clip on How to make a ghcjs-dom
   application in Leksah <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQnExdDL63c>.

   - Roman Cheplyaka writes a short 'n sweet tutorial
   <https://ro-che.info/articles/2015-05-28-force-list> on how a list may
   be variously forced. He summarizes the similarities and differences in a
   table that goes from the shallowestly evaluated seq () to forceSpine to
   forceElements to the deepest rnf. /r/haskell

   - Justin Leitgeb, Rails developer and Co-Founder / CTO of Stack
   Builders, a Haskell-enabled software consultancy, deprioritizes learning
   Clojure, Go, Erlang, and Scala in favor of Agda, Coq, Idris, Elm, and
   Liquid Haskell
   He will invest a couple of weeks at the Oregon PL Summer School starting
   June 15 <https://www.cs.uoregon.edu/research/summerschool/summer15/>.

   - Tony Morris announces a three-day Haskell-based Intro to FP course in
   Melbourne, July 21-23 this year. Pitched at beginners, it features learning
   by coding. Free; application deadline: July 10

   - By popular request
   František Farka and his team recorded all of a workshop on type
   inference in Dundee, Scotland
   <http://staff.computing.dundee.ac.uk/frantisekfarka/tiap/> held a couple
   of weeks ago. Highly-viewed talks
   <https://www.youtube.com/user/qmbevents/videos> include Edwin Brady
   <http://staff.computing.dundee.ac.uk/frantisekfarka/tiap/#edwin> on
   implementing dependent types in Idris and Conor McBride
   <http://staff.computing.dundee.ac.uk/frantisekfarka/tiap/#conor> on
   "Type Inference Needs Revolution." /r/haskell

   - Michael Hicks at UMD, PC chair of POPL 2012, writes a PL research
   cum pitch for new grad students. An informal poll he did shows PL Ph.D.s
   get good jobs. He explains that "The ethos of PL research is to not just
   find solutions to important problems, but to find the *best expression
   of those solutions.*" As ethos specimens, he gives three: probabilistic
   programming, incremental computation a.k.a. self-adaptive computation, and
   authenticated data structures (see LambdaAuth
   <http://amiller.github.io/lambda-auth/>). HN-worthy

   - Jan Stolarek gives a glimpse
   of GHC's new injective type families feature, which is joint research with
   SPJ and Richard Eisenberg. It brings Haskell one step closer to having a
   notion of type functions as opposed to mere 'constructors.' The feature is
   useful in type-level hacking. It allows the arguments of a type family to
   be inferred solely by result type.

   But Lennart Augustsson on /r/haskell
   gives a trivial example where even when a type family isn't injective, its
   argument can still be inferred knowing a particular result type. He regrets
   that GHC doesn't do this.

   - Joe Nelson uploads the video and a summary
   <http://begriffs.com/posts/2015-05-24-safe-haskell.html> of Kristen
   Kozak introducing the Safe Haskell extension to the SF Bay Area Haskell
   Users Group
   on May 12. Slides here
<http://wordroute.com/grayjay/safe-haskell.pdf>. Redditor
   adds the link to and tidies up the Safe Haskell wiki
   <https://wiki.haskell.org/Safe_Haskell> entry.

   - Out of frustration with existing Windows GUI FFIs, Luka Horvat
   creates bindings for WinForms
   <https://github.com/LukaHorvat/HaskellForms>, Microsoft's .NET
   menus-and-widgets library. He binds to F# instead of lower-level C++/C#
   because it's easier. /r/haskell

   - Gabriel Gonzalez
   <http://www.haskellforall.com/2015/05/the-internet-of-code.html> demoes
   another piece of Morte, what he describes as his "pandoc for programming
   languages." He prototypes "distributing typed code over the internet where
   the unit of compilation is individual expressions." /r/haskell

   - Taylor Fausak forsakes TagSoup
   <https://hackage.haskell.org/package/tagsoup> and scrapes websites
   <http://taylor.fausak.me/2015/05/21/scraping-websites-with-haskell/> the
   hard way using xml-conduit. He concludes that it's "tougher than doing the
   same thing in scripting languages, but hopefully easier than [his blog
   readers] expected."

   - Stuart Popejoy writes a monad tutorial
   <http://slpopejoy.github.io/posts/Effectful01.html>. A redditor finds it
   an "entertaining explanation of monads." Another asks the OOP-ish question:
   are monads "basically wrappers that contain 'impure' data and actions with
   some common functions?" See /r/haskell

*Announcement:* Semen Trygubenko has stepped down from publishing his
edition of HWN. Losing him means there will be no issue next week.

*Quotes of the Week:*

   - UnoOuzo <https://twitter.com/UnoOuzo/status/601658244201848832>: "The
   type of my love is parametrically polymorphic. It is unbounded." Looking
   into ways to cite this in my thesis.

   - Conor McBride
   Algebra is a posh way of saying "construction kit".

   - Michael Hicks
   The ethos of PL research is to not just find solutions to important
   problems, but to find the

*best expression of those solutions. *
   - There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the
   creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When
   you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age. -- Sophia

-- Kim-Ee
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