[Haskell-cafe] Are bottoms ever natural?

Brandon Allbery allbery.b at gmail.com
Tue Dec 19 07:06:49 UTC 2017

Define "natural".

You might want to look into the concept of Turing completeness. One could
define a subset of Haskell in which bottoms cannot occur... but it turns
out there's a lot of useful things you can't do in such a language. (In
strict languages, these often are expressed as infinite loops of one kind
or another. Note also that any dependency on external input is an infinite
loop from the perspective of the language, since it can only be broken by
the external entity providing the input.)

On Tue, Dec 19, 2017 at 1:47 AM, (IIIT) Siddharth Bhat <
siddharth.bhat at research.iiit.ac.in> wrote:

> I've been thinking about the issue of purity and speculation lately, and
> from what little I have read, it looks like the presence of bottom hiding
> inside a lazy value is a huge issue.
> How "natural" is it for bottoms to exist? If one were to change Haskell
> and declare that any haskell value can be speculated upon, what
> ramifications does this have?
> Is it totally broken? Is it "correct" but makes programming unpleasant?
> What's the catch?
> Thanks,
> Siddharth
> --
> Sending this from my phone, please excuse any typos!
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brandon s allbery kf8nh                               sine nomine associates
allbery.b at gmail.com                                  ballbery at sinenomine.net
unix, openafs, kerberos, infrastructure, xmonad        http://sinenomine.net
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