what's the goal of haskell-prime?

Johannes Waldmann waldmann at imn.htwk-leipzig.de
Wed Jan 25 03:37:14 EST 2006

Dear all, in the "mission statement" I read

>   We will strive to only include tried-and-true language features,

but the current discussion seems to have a wider focus,
i. e. it is more of a wish list. Indeed I think that this is a good
idea (ask (future) Haskell users what they want)
but it might not be the original goal of the Haskell-Prime effort.

On the other hand, design-by-committee (or by wiki, call it what you
want) has its problems. Just for our enjoyment, here are two quotes
from Stroustrup: Design and Evolution of C++ (1994) (ch. 12.6, p. 269f):

* ... Tom Cargill got a lot of applause for the .. suggestion
that anyone who proposed a new feature for C++ should also propose
an old feature of similar complexity that should be removed...

* Jim Waldo .. followed up with a further idea: Proposers of new
features should be required to donate a kidney. That would make people
think hard before proposing, and even people without any sense
would propose at most two extensions.

I like to stress that when discussing an extension, we should
strive to clearly state the problem that it tries to solve,
and we should check carefully what solutions are already known
(within Haskell, or within other languages/libraries).

Best regards,
-- Johannes Waldmann -- Tel/Fax (0341) 3076 6479/80 --
---- http://www.imn.htwk-leipzig.de/~waldmann/ -------

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