Haskell Weekly News: May 23, 2009

Submitted by byorgey on Sat, 05/23/2009 - 3:30pm.
Haskell Weekly News: May 23, 2009

Welcome to issue 119 of HWN, a newsletter covering developments in the Haskell community.


GHC porting works again. Ian Lynagh announced that the instructions for porting GHC to a new architecture now work again with the HEAD. If you get stuck when trying to do a port, feel free to ask on cvs-ghc at haskell.org or in #ghc on freenode.

6.10.4 plans. Ian Lynagh announced plans for a 6.10.4 bugfix release of GHC. If you know of any bugs that you think should be looked into for 6.10.4, please let the development team know.

The Timber compiler 1.0.3. Johan Nordlander announced the release of version 1.0.3 of the Timber compiler. Timber is a modern language for building event-driven systems, based around the notion of reactive objects. It is also a purely functional language derived from Haskell, although with a strict evaluation semantics. 1.0.3 is a bug fix release, paving the way for future feature releases.

mathlink- Tracy Wadleigh announced the release of mathlink, a library for writing Mathematica packages in Haskell. One simply writes some functions of type (MLGet a, MLPut b) => a -> IO b and provides a package specification in a simple DSL; the result is a program that exposes functions that can be called from Mathematica.

text 0.2, fast and comprehensive Unicode support using stream fusion. Bryan O'Sullivan announced the availability of text 0.2, an efficient Unicode text library that uses stream fusion. New and notable in this release is support for lazy, chunked text, so you can process text files far larger than memory using a small footprint.

Haskell Hackathon in Philadelphia. Brent Yorgey announced Hac phi, a Haskell hackathon to be held in Philadelphia in July. Check out the wiki page and add your name if you are interested in attending! More details to follow soon.

feed2twitter 0.2 & hackage2twitter 0.2.1. Tom Lokhorst announced the first release of feed2twitter, a library for sending posts from a news feed to Twitter.

EsotericBot 0.0.1. spoon announced the release of Esotericbot, a sophisticated, lightweight IRC bot, written in Haskell.

atom 0.0.4. Tom Hawkins announced a new release of atom; this version adds an array datatype (A a).

Hieroglyph-2.21 and buster, buster-gtk, and buster-network-2.0. Jeff Heard announced new releases of Hieroglyph, buster, buster-gtk, and buster-network, with tons of changes; read Jeff's original announcement for details.

TxtSushi 0.1. Keith Sheppard announced the first version of TxtSushi, a collection of command line utilities for processing tab-delimited and CSV files. It includes a utility for doing SQL SELECTs on flat files.


Should exhaustiveness testing be on by default? Don Stewart started a discussion, prompted by a recent blog post, on whether coverage checking should be on by default, and other issues relating to compiler warnings and coding style.

Proposal on the platform API policy question. Duncan Coutts proposed a general policy for Haskell Platform release cycles and versioning, based on input from previous discussions.

the problem of design by negation. Michael Mossey began a discussion on software design philosophies. "Design by negation" considered harmful?

Haskell in 3 Slides. John Van Enk asked for ideas on a 3 to 4 slide introduction to Haskell. What do YOU think should be on those slides?

Blog noise

Haskell news from the blogosphere. Blog posts from people new to the Haskell community are marked with >>>, be sure to welcome them!

Quotes of the Week

  • roconnor: Damn it, I don't know how to make this as slow as python.
  • koeien: Let's register it [monomorphismrestriction.com] to prevent it from being used ;)
  • Elly: Rule 1 of malloc is the same as rule 1 of air travel: "Attempt at all costs to keep your number of landings equal to your number of takeoffs."
  • monochrom: I was trying to design a sensible language... then I downloaded ghc.
  • conal: The C ADT is implemented simply as String (or char *, for you type theorists, using a notation from Kleene)
  • Will Donnelly: monads are okay after a bit (though I'm still a little suspicious of them)

About the Haskell Weekly News

New editions are posted to the Haskell mailing list as well as to the Haskell Sequence and Planet Haskell. RSS is also available, and headlines appear on haskell.org.

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