Archive for April, 2011
I see Haskell as a collaboration between academics and some of the more academically-inclined practicals to attempt to create a truly useful language whose state space encompasses a wide set of useful things while retaining as many of the state-space-reducing properties of their beautiful theories as possible. It is a unique-to-my-knowledge blend of the practical and the academic.
Consequently, the Haskell community is the only community I know that is doing new things in the field of language and API design. The Haskell community is not just shuffling around objects and global state and adding a dash of syntactic sugar and converging on another dialect of CLispScript, they are breaking genuinely new ground. As far as I know they are the first language to take being functional completely seriously and not just provide convenient escape hatches back to imperative-land when they can’t figure out how to do something purely functionally, and still strive to be a practical solution to real programming problems, and therefore they are the first sizable community actually trying to build real, useful systems out of the reduced-state-space tools.
I’m just finishing up the Haskell chapter of Bruce Tate’s “Seven Languages in Seven Weeks”, and I definitely need to drill deeper into Haskell. Clojure looks very interesting too.