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Re: [Caml-list] ocaml complexity
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Date: 2001-06-11 (14:05)
From: Pierre Weis <Pierre.Weis@i...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] ocaml complexity
> Is Ocaml's acceptability at Pixar independent of its use in the larger
> marketplace? If so, I'm surprised. (I believed that the opposite was the
> case for Lisp, from your comments on cll.) The more people who use a
> language, the more useful it is through the availability of tools, libraries
> and trained programmers. And yes, the more politically acceptable it is to
> decision makers. Which is fair enough - what if INRIA does stop supporting
> Caml?

INRIA is supporting Caml since early 1984 (following its support to
the development of an ML compiler from... the beginning!).

Objective Caml is one of a very few sucessful software provided by
INRIA. Hence it is politically important for INRIA (read it as ``it is
an important argument for INRIA to get funding), hence INRIA is not
likely to abandon its support for Caml (also remember that more and
more INRIA's software is written in Caml!).

Another argument quoted from industry:

``Caml is free software, the source of the compiler is available,
well written, and it has almost no bugs: it would not be a big deal to
maintain the Caml compiler by ourselves, if INRIA were to fail at
maintaining it''.

> There's also the larger question of our professional responsibility to
> society. Software quality is a key (though usual buried) problem for the
> modern world. Tools that can improve it are good. Ocaml has significant
> potential to do that. I'd hate to see it under used to the extent that CLOS
> and Smalltalk are.
> Jonathan

On this last point, I agree with you 100%, since it was (and still is)
one of our main goals when designing Caml: try to improve the quality
of software developments that can be done using Caml.

Best regards,

Pierre Weis

INRIA, Projet Cristal,,

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