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Re: When functional languages can be accepted by industry?
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Date: -- (:)
From: Markus Mottl <mottl@m...>
Subject: Re: When functional languages can be accepted by industry?
> In another life I wrote lots of numerical linear algebra programs, and I 
> find that a little overloading would make the code a lot nicer.

I admit: I don't write this much numerical code so I don't have many
opportunities to complain about missing operator overloading there...

> Funny that you should say that, I've been spending a bit more of my spare 
> time hacking Haskell for the same reasons you describe below. I translated 
> almost all of the monads in Wadler's "Essence of FP" paper to OCaml but 
> ended up using regular prefix syntax. Yes, if you use different monads 
> simultaneously you have to use qualified names. Bummer.

It is of course possible to use "regular" (?) prefix syntax, but there are
other problems, too: e.g. if you want to "move" from a state transformer to
a state reader, you might be forced to update some module names, whereas
resolution of operator overloading might change meaning (= the "right"
monad to use) automatically as required.

> The main problems here are 
> 
> (1) The enormous number of existing libraries (and tools for managing them) 
>     for these other languages
>
> (2) The extensive documentation they have

Well, there is not much one can do against this unless you can pay a very
big development team that just focuses on these things...

On the other hand, a "slowly" growing library is more likely to be
well-designed.

> (3) The OCaml error messaging, which makes worse the problem most people 
>     already have with the unfamiliar type system

Except in the cases when OCaml prints out some kilometers of conflicting
module signatures, I am quite content with the error messages.

> Fortunately for me, my employer really likes OCaml :-)

Lucky you! ;-)

Best regards,
Markus Mottl

-- 
Markus Mottl, mottl@miss.wu-wien.ac.at, http://miss.wu-wien.ac.at/~mottl