[Haskell] Re: Use of tab characters in indentation-sensitive code

Wolfgang Jeltsch wolfgang at jeltsch.net
Mon Jan 26 13:23:05 EST 2004

Am Sonntag, 25. Januar 2004 23:42 schrieb Sebastian Sylvan:
> Sean L. Palmer wrote:
> > Besides, the idea would be not to use &nbsp, but rather some "indent
> > paragraph" tag.
> This is kind-of a cool idea. If I ever take a course involving writing
> my own language I'll be sure to incorporate this idea.

It's not so cool, in my opinion.  And indent paragraph tag would belong to 
visual formatting.  If you start using tags, why wouldn't you use them to 
denote the logical structure of the program like the { ; } syntax does?

Obviously, the approach of denoting structure via indentation was used for 
Haskell only because indenting is what most programmers use anyway when they 
have some kind of substructure.  You don't need any extra markup, you just 
denote structure by using an obvious, nice-looking indentation style.

If you would use indent paragraph tags and look at the source code, this 
source code wouldn't look very nice anymore.  You could argue that you use a 
special editing tool.  But then you could use the logical markup I talked 
about above and the editing tool would do the indentation on the basis of the 

> /S


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