String != [Char]

Greg Weber greg at
Sat Mar 17 02:44:33 CET 2012

the text library and Text data type have shown the worth in real world
Haskell usage with GHC.
I try to avoid String whenever possible, but I still have to deal with
conversions and other issues.
There is a lot of real work to be done to convert away from [Char],
but I think we need to take it out of the language definition as a
first step.

I can only see one issue with the proposal: it can be convenient to
operate on a list of characters.
But I think there are plenty of solutions at our disposal. A simple
conversion from Text to a list of characters might suffice. In GHC,
OverloadedStrings means users would still be free to use String the
same way they are now.

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