[Haskell] Haskell Weekly News: Issue 79 - July 31, 2008

Brent Yorgey byorgey at seas.upenn.edu
Thu Jul 31 16:47:57 EDT 2008

Haskell Weekly News
Issue 79 - July 31, 2008

   Welcome to issue 79 of HWN, a newsletter covering developments in the
   [1]Haskell community.

   Apologies for the slightly late issue this week, attributable to a
   combination of having to transfer all my files onto a different
   computer (my former employer had the audacity to request the return of
   their laptop, now that I no longer work for them) and packing up to
   move to Philadelphia on Saturday. At any rate, some exciting news this
   week, including #haskell passing the 500 mark and a new release of Yi
   -- enjoy!

Community News

   Correction from last week's issue: congratulations were bestowed upon a
   certain "Dr. Johansson" who does not, in fact, exist, having been
   replaced almost a year ago by the happily married but otherwise
   identical Dr. Mikael Vejdemo-Johansson.


   A fancier Get monad or two (a la binary and binary-strict). Chris
   Kuklewicz [2]announced two new Get-like monads for binary data, with a
   number of additional features.

   #haskell irc channel reaches 500 users. Don Stewart [3]announced that
   6 1/2 years after its inception, under the guiding hand of Shae Erisson
   (aka shapr), the [4]#haskell IRC channel on freenode has finally
   reached 500 users! This puts the channel at around the 12th largest
   (and mostest friendliest) community of the 7000 freenode channels.

   RandomDotOrg-0.1. Austin Seipp [5]announced the release of the
   [6]RandomDotOrg package, an interface to the [7]random.org random
   number generator.

   Mueval 0.3.1, 0.4, 0.4.5, 0.4.6, 0.5. Gwern Branwen [8]announced a
   number of releases of [9]Mueval, a package allowing dynamic runtime
   evaluation of Haskell expressions. As far as anyone knows, all possible
   security holes have been plugged, and it's missing only a few features
   before it can replace hs-plugins as lambdabot's evaluation mechanism.

   Need functional programmers for debugging study. Chris Bogart [10]asked
   for functional programmers currently developing or maintaining a medium
   to large-sized program, willing to let him look over their shoulder
   while they do debugging or coding on the project.

   Yi 0.4.1. Jean-Philippe Bernardy [11]announced the 0.4.1 release of the
   Yi editor, a text editor written and extensible in Haskell. The
   long-term goal of the Yi project is to provide the editor of choice for
   Haskell programmers.

   Hipmunk 0.1 and HipmunkPlayground 0.1. Felipe Lessa [12]announced the
   availability of [13]Hipmunk, containing bindings for the [14]Chipmunk
   2D physics engine, and [15]Hipmunk Playground, where you may see some
   of Hipmunk's features in action. The bindings are low-level but try to
   hide most of the nasty details of the C code.

   faster BLAS bindings. Patrick Perry [16]announced that he has
   [17]largely closed the C performance gap with his recent [18]Haskell
   BLAS bindings. Expect a new release shortly.

   FPers in Northwest Arkansas?. Nathan Bloomfield [19]is wondering if
   there are any Haskellers in the NW Arkansas region to start a
   functional programming interest group in the area.

   Italian Haskellers Summer Meeting. Pasqualino 'Titto' Assini
   [20]announced something about a summer meeting for Italian Haskellers.
   If you would like to know precisely what it was that was announced, I
   suggest you learn Italian.

   InterleavableIO. Marco Tulio Gontijo e Silva [21]announced a package,
   [22]interleavableIO, based on Jules Bean (quicksilver)'s [23]monadic
   tunneling code.

Google Summer of Code

   Progress updates from participants in the 2008 [24]Google Summer of

   Hoogle 4. Neil Mitchell (ndm) is working on [25]Hoogle 4. [26]This
   week, he rewrote type search: after three days of coding, it required
   only a few minor debugging tweaks to get it to work. Haskell FTW!
   Expect a public beta of the command line interface next week.

   Generic tries. Jamie Brandon is working on a library for efficient maps
   using generalized tries. [27]This week, he has finally got everything
   up and running bug free on the new API, except the internals are still
   using association lists instead of AVL trees. He also exhibits a
   promising benchmark.

   DPH physics engine. Roman Cheplyaka (Feuerbach) is working on a
   [28]physics engine using [29]Data Parallel Haskell.

   GHC plugins. Max Bolingbroke is working on dynamically loaded plugins
   for GHC.

   Cabal dependency framework. Andrea Vezzosi (Saizan) is working on a
   [30]make-like dependency analysis framework for Cabal.

   Language.C. Benedikt Huber (visq) is [31]working on Language.C, a
   standalone parser/pretty printer library for C99.

   GHC API. Thomas Schilling (nominolo) is working on [32]improvements to
   the GHC API.


   Build system woes. Roman Leshchinskiy began a [33]discussion on Cabal
   and GHC's new build system, with some suggestions for improving the

   Syb Renovations? Issues with Data.Generics. Claus Reinke [34]brought up
   a number of issues with Data.Generics, with suggestions for

   A question about mfix. Wei Hu [35]asked a question about the definition
   and semantics of mfix, the monadic fix operation.

   Using fundeps to resolve polymorphic types to concrete types. Bryan
   Donlan [36]asked a question about the interaction between functional
   dependencies and type checking, with a rather subtle answer.

   Best book/tutorial on category theory and its applications. fero
   [37]asked for recommendations on a book about category theory.

   Loss of humour. Andrew Coppin [38]laments the loss of some of Haskell's
   humorous heritage.

Blog noise

   [39]Haskell news from the [40]blogosphere.
     * Ketil Malde: [41]Updates and other trivialities.
     * Ulisses Costa: [42]Lex/yacc. A short lex/yacc tutorial.
     * Luke Plant: [43]Haskell Regex replace. Luke wonders if anyone knows
       how to do regex replace in Haskell.
     * Eric Kow (kowey): [44]simple random numbers in Haskell. Eric writes
       a simple tutorial for the System.Random module.
     * Jamie Brandon: [45]Week 7 progress (respect my formatting damnit).
       An update on Jamie's Google Summer of Code project.
     * Tupil: [46]Formlets in Haskell.
     * John Goerzen (CosmicRay): [47]Seen in the Haskell wiki.
     * Ulisses Costa: [48]Type inference.
     * Dennis Bueno: [49]ICFP Contest 2008 -- The One Liners. Dennis
       describes his experiences participating in this year's ICFP
       Programming Contest.
     * Magnus Therning: [50]More prefixes.
     * Don Stewart (dons): [51]Haskell: Batteries Included.
     * >>> Harry Pierson: [52]Monadic Philosophy Part 2 - The LINQ Monad.
     * >>> Harry Pierson: [53]Monadic Philosophy. Harry begins a series
       explaining his journey through understanding monads.
     * Ulisses Costa: [54]Pointfree Calculator.
     * Eric Kow (kowey): [55]pandoc gets mediawiki support.
     * Dan Piponi (sigfpe): [56]The Fibonacci Numbers, Coalgebraicaly.
     * Twan van Laarhoven: [57]Solving nonograms.
     * >>> Ayumilove: [58]Haskell Programming Tutorial Part 2A.
     * >>> Ayumilove: [59]Haskell Programming Tutorial Part 2B.
     * >>> Ayumilove: [60]Haskell Programming Tutorial Part 3.
     * >>> Darren Moffat: [61]T5120 donated to Haskell Community. Sun's
       donation inspires Darren to get back into Haskell and maybe
       contribute some code to GHC again, like he did back when he was a
       student at Glasgow.
     * Mikael Vejdemo-Johansson (DrSyzygy): [62]Blackbox computing of
       A-infinity algebras. The last results from Mikael's thesis have
       made it into article form, and are [63]available on the arXiv.
     * John Goerzen (CosmicRay): [64]OSCon Update.
     * Real-World Haskell: [65]Beta availability hiccups.
     * John Goerzen (CosmicRay): [66]First 2 Days of OSCon. John reports
       live from OSCon.
     * Neil Mitchell: [67]GSoC Hoogle: Week 9. An update on Neil's Google
       Summer of Code project.
     * Patrick Perry: [68]Addressing Haskell BLAS Performance Issues.
       Patrick's Haskell BLAS bindings are now significantly sped up, and
       he explains what made the difference.
     * Arnar Birgisson (Arnar): [69]Parsing annotated postfix operators
       with Haskell. Arnar exhibits a neat pattern for constructing
       certain types of parsers, which makes essential use of first-class

Quotes of the Week

     * mauke: a hint to beginners: typing 'fix error' in ghci does not
       have the intended effect.
     * mauke: Hungarian Notation constructs a type system in the mind of
       the programmer.
     * rwbarton: I was hoping for a pile of Functors.
     * Baughn: [on lambdabot] Yes, PMS is a real issue. Poor memory size,
       that is.
     * Cale: There should be a website called "Static Equilibrium or Not"
       where you rate pictures according to whether you think the depicted
       objects are in static equilibrium.
     * sahko: xmonad is an ancient african word for "you dont need to use
       a mouse fool".
     * doidydoidy: Category theory is exactly like a comic book
       alternative universe, except they use the prefix "co-" instead of

About the Haskell Weekly News

   New editions are posted to [70]the Haskell mailing list as well as to
   [71]the Haskell Sequence and [72]Planet Haskell. [73]RSS is also
   available, and headlines appear on [74]haskell.org. Headlines are
   available as [75]PDF.

   To help create new editions of this newsletter, please see the
   information on [76]how to contribute. Send stories to byorgey at seas
   dot upenn dot edu. The darcs repository is available at darcs get
   [77]http://code.haskell.org/~byorgey/code/hwn/ .


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