Q: sort's key and cmp parameters

Paul Rubin http
Sat Oct 3 22:53:32 CEST 2009

kj <no.email at please.post> writes:
> !!!
> Maybe Haskell is much handier than I give it credit for, but it's
> hard for me to imagine that it is as convenient as Python 3, even
> without the cmp sort option...  

Heh, yeah, I was being a bit snarky/grouchy.  Haskell has a very steep
learning curve and will never be as convenient as Python for banging
out some small script.  It's worth considering for larger or more
serious programs.

> What's going on here?  Our lab recently hired a new postdoc who,
> to our disbelief, works almost exclusively in OCaml.  And I hear
> all this talk about switching to Haskell or Scheme.  I don't get
> it.  Despite the elegance of these languages, the libraries are
> not there.  It seems to me it would take forever to get the simplest
> things done in these languages...

Haskell's library is growing very rapidly, more so than Python's I'd
say.  Take a look at


if you're willing to count Hackage (sort of the equivalent of the
Python cheese shop).  The Haskell Platform (counterpart to Python
stdlib) is also very actively expanding.

Ocaml and Scheme both seem to me to be sort of stagnant.  Scheme is an
elegant fossil.  Some people find Ocaml to be at a sweet spot,
combining Python's convenience and the more important aspects of
Haskell's expressiveness.  I haven't used it myself.  It seems to me
that Haskell is attracting all the most advanced development

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