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Estimating the size of the ocaml community
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Date: 2005-02-03 (20:51)
From: chris.danx <chris.danx@n...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Estimating the size of the ocaml community
skaller wrote:
> On Fri, 2005-02-04 at 05:06, Thomas Fischbacher wrote:
>>Anyway, this leaves us with a very interesting question: how many people 
>>actually do believe in the value of Ocaml? I, for myself, use it whenever 
>>it is the most appropriate tool for a job (usually, when portability is 
>>an issue). This is sometimes the case, but more often than not, LISP 
>>turned out to be a better choice for what I do.
> Well ..
> [skaller@pelican] ~/links/flx/src>wc *.ml
>   89737  342248 3223570 total
> 90K Camls here speak for themselves ..
> Ocaml has four downsides from my viewpoint:
> (a) interfacing to C isn't trivial
> (b) native code compiler on x86 can't make a shared library
> To a large extent these two factors are not only
> the reason for those 90K lines (which implement a 
> compiler) but also the reason I'll probably have to
> bootstrap the compiler away from Ocaml.

I didn't realise the native code compiler on x86 couldn't do this.  What 
exactly is the problem?

For interfacing to C would it be helpful to create a tool for handling 
all the underlying stuff.  In Ada, binding to C is done through special 
compiler directives and it's pretty trivial to do.  OCaml isn't Ada or 
as close to C as Ada is, but I was thinking of something that allows 
descriptions in OCaml augmented with directives telling the tool how to 
handle C.  Running the tool over a script would generate the appropriate 
C code for interfacing with OCaml.

I'm not 100% sure of the details or the benefit, but it might be worth