[Haskell wikibook] One less red link in Haskell Basics

Daniel Mlot duplode_1 at yahoo.com.br
Tue Apr 10 04:41:31 CEST 2012


Since I am doing some moderately large scale changes to the Beginner's 
Track so that we can eventually dispense with that "in reorganization" 
warning on the main page, I guess it is a good idea to write regularly 
to the list so that anyone with an opinion can chime in.

Last week some nice progress (IMHO) was done with the first two parts of 
the Beginner's Trail; and by now I believe a newbie wouldn't find any 
serious breakage disrupting his progress through them. Beyond switching 
the main focus of "Next steps" to a first presentation of pattern 
matching, the other major change was an attempt at writing one of the 
two new pages that Apfelmus, back in 2010 envisioned for Haskell Basics; 
namely, "Building a vocabulary".

My realization of "Building a vocabulary" has the same goal Apfelmus 
originally outlined - making newbies aware of the existence and 
importance of Prelude and the hierarchical libraries. Unfortunately, it 
does so in a chatty rather than practical way. To counter that, we will 
need at least some of the following:

1. the Prelude cheat sheets we talked about in 2010 (see 
for a rough demo - though by now I believe that the text sections after 
the table are unnecessary);

2. to make better use of the "Libraries Reference" part of Haskell in 
Practice (by completing some pages, making others clearer and providing 
more references to them in the Beginner's Track);

3. more exercises which involve actually using Prelude and the libraries.

Some of these suggestions could be incorporated into "Building a 
vocabulary"; others would fit better being diluted along the Beginner's 
Trail. For the moment, though, I believe the initial version of the new 
page can give newbies some useful pointers.

As usual, it will be most appreciated if you have a few minutes to spend 
reading "Building a vocabulary" and share your opinions on whether the 
advice given is sound, the text is not too boring and the example I made 
up is not too ridiculous.


Daniel Mlot

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