Status of Haskell Platform?

Claus Reinke claus.reinke at
Sat May 22 07:56:43 EDT 2010

[sorry if you should receive this in duplicate but the previous 
 attempt seems to have bounced somewhere]

>> I assume that there are good reasons why the current release
>> is stalled (GHC update, Cabal update?, ..), but such reasons are
>> not easily visible on the platform web pages. Nor can I see any
>> message traffic on this list that would discuss or explain the
>> issues related to this delay (since "early April").
>> From what I heard, I should wait for GHC 6.12.3. Anything else?
> We need to wait for GHC 6.12.3 -- due to the bug in 6.12.2

Thanks for the confirmation. But that is exactly the kind of 
information that HP downloaders would want to see on the 
HP pages (plus some indication of how uptodate it is and 
when to expect more news). Internal communication (even 
if there is a lot of it) is not the same as external communication.
>> More generally, could the current status of the platform please
>> be made *obvious early* on its webpages? Currently, a visit
>> looking for such info might go like this:
> Your plan sounds excellent. Do you think you could draft a page? I can
> add it to the site.

My "plan" was little more than a request that the HP release managers 
make the information you have (and I have not) available on the HP 
pages. I'm not a graphics designer, you do not need a draft for adding 
a link to a web page, and I do not have the information that I would
like to see on the pages. Which is why I was asking for that information
in the first place!-)

To make some progress, I attach a modified download page/style 
file (I'm not a fan of pixel-positioned HTML, so my attempt to fit the 
modifications into the layout might need adjustments). The idea is 
simply to have a single dated news item that lists current and next 
release versions, either with date or with reasons for delays, and 
to add a link to the release timetable for more detailed information
(since the platform logo is used elsewhere, it might be good to
provide a variant with automatically overlaid version number).

If you read the rest of my "plan", you'll notice that other pages will
be affected, too (eg, the timetable should mention 6.12.3, not 6.12.2,
should explain the reason for the delay, and should list any other 
tickets that are blockers for the release, or that are going to be 
fixed in that release; and the OS-specific versions should mention
the beta status and the kind/severity of the blocking issues - linking
to trac tickets would do). Having a delay is not the problem, not 
having information about it is.

Those changes are not cosmetic, they are about establishing a 
workflow that allows you (who have the information) to make 
current information available to HP users and to keep that info
up to date. Since you are already using trac, the simplest approach
might be to ensure that its features are put to good use. You 
would need to scan the tickets (at least once per release) to make 
sure that milestones are accurate, but then you could simply put 
a link to a custom trac query into the release timetable page
(before the GHC team finally got overwhelmed by tickets, they 
had a good handle on using trac for this). Alternatively, the
wiki/trac integration should allow to list the most important
tickets, and have them striked out as soon as they are closed.

It is not about fiddling with the webpages now, to add todays
info - that will only help for a few weeks. It is about making
sure that the relevant information is maintained in the system,
in such a way that it is published automatically or at least 
available to be queried.

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