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Date: -- (:)
From: oliver@f...
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] [ANN] The Missing Library
On Sat, Apr 24, 2004 at 12:08:15AM +0200, Basile STARYNKEVITCH wrote:
[...] 
> Regarding standard libraries, they should be kept small, because they
> have to be learnt with the language. I believe that one of Common Lisp
> problems (and perhaps source of failure) is the huge size of its
> standard library, which is intimidating.

Yes. This is one point: Without good books it seems unpossible to
master Lisp because of its library size.

But I don't agree that the OCaml-livbraries are too big.
But I also accept the INRIA Cathedral in respect to the
Core-OCaml. IMHO OCaml is an excellent language.

And I'm not interested in incompatibel or bloated
Libraries. So it's good that INRIA/OCaml-core-developers
do not accept every thing that is talked about here.

But some little enhancements in convenience could be made
by some little more code in the libraries.

For example: The first time I explored OCaml was with
OCaml 3.01. I printed out the complete Reference manual
and sometimes, when I had the time, I learned to program
with it. Otherwise, when I had no time to do so,
I paused with OCaml.

And one day I used the Hashtbl-module, and recently had
the need to go through all bindings and collect data (in
a functional way).
But: there was no Hashtbl.fold in the manual.
Well the task would have been possible inmperatively with
Hashtbl.iter, but I looked for a Hashtbl.fold.
Well, and I was happxy, that at that time I asked for it,
it already was implemented in the nbewer versions of
OCaml. So IMHO there is progression on needed things
in the standard lib, and it is well done.

And when I ask for a Hashtbl.keys now, this may be accepted
by the OCaml-team, or it may not be accepted.
There is discussion and maybe they think: OK, good idea,
or they trhink: Well, nice idea, but not for the standard lib.

If the latter, I can use Hashtb.fold and programming it by myself,
or may use other Libraries.

But at least the discussion about new functions should be
possible.

BTW: Is there a list, where people can "throw in" their
     ideas/suggestions to OCaml?
     Or is all done by this mailing list? Wouldn't it
     be nice to have a separated list, or a webpage,
     where suggestions could be listed without further
     discussion, only that it is possible to gain an overview
     on what people want to have?
     I think it's goof that the OCaml-core developers will have
     the last word to say about it, but coming up with ideas
     should also be allowed.



> 
> Again, everything above is my own opinion, not those of INRIA (where I
> happen to work currently) - I am not paid to talk for INRIA! But I
> think that there is too much criticism w.r.t. to the work on Ocaml
> done at INRIA. "C'est la rançon du succès" (I leave this last sentence
> in French).

I don't want to see my mails as criticism to OCaml-team/INRIA.
They have done a great work and I'm glad to have the possibility
to program with OCaml.

I only tell here some ideas and suggestions and what I want to
have there, but this is not intended as a criticism to
the OCaml/INRIA people!


Ciao,
   Oliver

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