[Haskell] haskell.org committee: first-year report

Ganesh Sittampalam ganesh at earth.li
Wed Oct 26 22:58:49 CEST 2011

This report is also posted to

The haskell.org committee is reaching the end of its first year of
operation, so it's time to look back and see what has been achieved.

*haskell.org incorporation*

The most important work for the year has been trying to get the
ownership of haskell.org resources -- principally some money from our
GSoC participation, and various machines -- on a sounder footing.

At the moment, Galois is kindly holding funds on behalf of haskell.org.
However, this causes them administrative difficulties and it would also
be better for haskell.org for them to be held separately in a vehicle
with tax-free status (at least in the US) that can also accept donations.

The main option we have been exploring is joining the Software Freedom
Conservancy (http://www.sfconservancy.org
<http://www.sfconservancy.org/>). After seeking the community's consent,
we have contacted them to begin the application process. Unfortunately
they are currently rather overworked and as they prioritise work for
existing projects over accepting new ones, we do not yet know when there
will be progress with this.

In the meantime we are also investigating joining an alternative,
Software in the Public Interest (http://www.spi-inc.org
<http://www.spi-inc.org/>). Discussions about this option are still ongoing.

The committee would like to thank Jason Dagit who has been helping us to
make progress on this issue over the last few months, with the support
of his employer Galois.

*Subdomain policy*

In response to various requests for subdomains of haskell.org, we have
formulated the following policy, now (belatedly!) documented

/Subdomains should be used for *services *rather than *content*/.

Content should be normally be hosted at subpaths
of http://www.haskell.org <http://www.haskell.org/>

So for example a Haskell graphics related website should normally go
athttp://www.haskell.org/graphics, rather
than http://graphics.haskell.org <http://graphics.haskell.org/>.

In contrast, during the year, we did add revdeps.hackage.haskell.org for
a hackage reverse-dependency lookup service, and of course
hackage.haskell.org already exists.

Clearly the line between services and content, and indeed the precise
definitions of each, is something of a grey area, and we are certainly
happy to be flexible particularly if there are technical or other
reasons for doing things one way. Our overall goal is to minimise
unnecessary proliferation of subdomains and to try to keep the
haskell.org domain reasonably well organised, while still helping people
do useful things with it.

*Move of www.haskell.org <http://www.haskell.org/> to a new dedicated host*

**For many years, www.haskell.org <http://www.haskell.org/> was
generously hosted by Paul Hudak at Yale. This was becoming increasingly
expensive for him so in late 2010 we moved to a new dedicated host
(lambda.haskell.org). At the same time we put in place a policy that
lambda would host only "meta" community resources, thus limiting the
number of people who need to have accounts on it. For some time before
this new project content had been created on community.haskell.org
anyway, and this move gave us the opportunity to move "legacy" sites
such as gtk2hs over to community. In addition, community.haskell.org is
now also a VM running on the same machine.

The committee as a whole's involvement in this was only to approve the
change -- the sysadmin team did all the actual work.


The haskell.org infrastructure as a whole is still in a rather tenuous
state. While the extreme unreliability we saw for a while has improved
with the reorganisation , the  level of sysadmin resource/involvement is
still inadequate. The committee is open to ideas on how to improve the

Unfortunately we can't provide a full statement of haskell.org's
accounts with this report; we are doing our best to track down the
necessary information and will produce them as soon as possible. Better
control and visibility of our finances and assets is of course one of
the benefits we are seeking by affiliating with SFC or SPI.

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