Version control systems
Malcolm.Wallace at cs.york.ac.uk
Sat Aug 9 16:30:52 EDT 2008
>>>> I seriously hope the plan is to move all *core* libraries
>>>> GHC's cabal repo) etc over to git, too.
> * one build system
> * one vcs
> This is a chance to make a big step towards accessibility, let's
> make that step.
Ultimately, I don't think git would make ghc any more accessible to
new contributors. Darcs is not especially offputting to any beginner
who already knows something about VCS in general.
What the move to git is about, is making life easier for the
*existing* HQ and core contributors. Evaluate it on that basis, and
not in terms of unknown (and unknowable) benefits to current non-
contributors. Indeed, you should also consider how many contributors
you might lose in a move.
I do hear some significant current contributors having doubts. I can
certainly appreciate that having to run 2 VCS in parallel might be
confusing and simply make matters worse than at present.
The libraries question is a difficult one. We have made a lot of
effort over the last 5 years to build infrastructure and code that is
shared and portable across multiple implementations of the language.
Is this the time to fork those supposedly "common" core libraries into
ghc versions vs the rest?
As someone who is not a contributor to GHC, and has never experienced
anything more than trivial problems with darcs, I have not felt
qualified to comment on the proposal to change GHC's VCS. But as a
frequent fixer of breakage in the core libraries, I would be reluctant
to have to move to a different VCS there. If the core libraries do
move, it will be increasingly difficult to avoid also needing to move
nhc98 and Hugs and goodness-knows how many other libraries. For me,
it would be un-forced, annoying, and I may not have the extra time
available to keep up.
So there is a danger that the community will be left with a single
(albeit very high quality) compiler, with no need for a Haskell Prime
(or any other Standard) in future.
If there are technical solutions that can reduce the pain, whilst
keeping multiple stake-holders happy, then I think they should be
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