Software has two ingredients: opinions and logic (=programming). The second ingredient is rare and is typically replaced by the first.
I blog about code correctness, maintainability, testability, and functional programming.
This blog does not represent views or opinions of my employer.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Imperative curlies 9: Haskell


If you read any of my posts about bashing curly braces and you worked with Haskell then I am sure you have thought: wait until someone shows Haskell to this guy. Well you have been right.

I am reading Learn Youa Haskell for Great Good! by Miran Lipovaca. My pride got bruised because of the book subtitle: Beginners Guide. The guy showing me Haskell is a university student from Slovenia. I may have been a bit skeptical when buying a copy but I am more than happy. If only any of the semantic web writers knew how to write as well as Miran (my semantic web reading or struggling through it is another story).

Haskell learning in many ways revalidates my opinions.  The concept sitting behind curly braces in Java practically does not exist in Haskell. 
If you see curly braces {} in Haskell you probably reading record syntax.  The underlying dislike of the imperative code simply permeates throughout the language.

I think learning Haskell is a must do exercise for every imperative programmer like myself. It is an eye opening experience to see a language where if-else statement (even though unpopular in Haskell) is really a function (well so it is in SCALA, but it is more in Haskell ;). You will start thinking of Java if statements as ugly conditional side-effects.  You will think of Java for-loops as ordered collections of side-effects. You will because, well, they are.

So go get the book and enjoy it as much as I do.

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