forwarded message on the importance of libraries

Ganesh Sittampalam ganesh at
Mon Jan 23 20:20:33 EST 2006

On Mon, 23 Jan 2006, Isaac Jones wrote:

> Garry Hodgson writes:
> "Isaac Jones" <isaac.jones at> wrote:
>>     Haskell' will be a conservative refinement of Haskell 98. It will
>>     be the work of this committee to adopt a set of language
>>     extensions and modifications and to standardize *a new set of
>>     libraries.* [emphasis mine]
> excellent.  just please please please don't give short shrift to the 
> libraries, as this is what will make or break any effort to make haskell 
> more useful to the development community at large.

I entirely agree that Haskell in general needs a large set of libraries. 
However, whether it should have a large set of *standardised* libraries is 
more questionable. In particular, standardised libraries can't be changed 
very easily.

What's the general feeling on this? The only mention of this issue on trac 
seems to be "define criteria for including libraries", so I guess noone is 
quite sure yet :-)

> excellent.  play close attention to the "out of the box" experience.
> if i can install it, run the examples, maybe have some useful
> command among them, i'm far more likely to invest the effort
> to go further.

We can have a large set of libraries distributed with every implementation 
without having those be fixed into the standard, though.

> there's a threshold of effort required to adopt any new language.
> the lower you can make that threshold, the more people will take
> that first step.

Entirely agreed.



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