January 2013

At last I can start blabbing about it. The School of Haskell went beta. We’ve been working on it for the last half a year with a team of top-notch Haskell programmers.

Our main effort is to create an online Haskell IDE, but the technology we’ve been developing for it was just aching to be used for teaching Haskell. Imagine an online tutorial where snippets of code can be compiled and run on the spot. You can play with them: edit, compile, and run with your changes. You can pull instant documentation for any library function used in the snippet. Yup! And there’s more. Read the blog I linked to above and sign up for beta. It’s a great opportunity to fulfill you New Year’s resolution to finally learn Haskell or to create some Haskell content yourself. Enjoy!

2013 starts on a very positive note: Simon Peyton-Jones has just endorsed our company, FP Complete. And, as the saying goes, he put his money where his mouth is: He invested his own money in FP Complete. Here’s what he wrote about us in his blog:

Of course, FP Complete thereby faces the challenge of making a business out of a language ecosystem, something known to be difficult! Here I am encouraged by the fact that Aaron and Bartosz are not, like many of us, primarily techno-geeks whose primary motivation is the technology itself (just read the Haskell Weekly News if you have any doubt what I mean). They are excited by Haskell all right, but they want to build a business, and they have experience of doing just that. And I’m very encouraged by the fact that Michael Snoyman (a giant of the Haskell community) has joined them, along with several others.

Of course, if you’ve been following my blogs you know that I am a techno-geek too. You might have noticed a slow evolution in my interests from the messiness of C++ and its template metaprogramming, through a flirt with the D language, the pitfalls of concurrency and parallelism, to the clarity and robustness of Haskell. If I was able to entice some of you to make some of this journey with me, it makes me very happy.

But, as Simon PJ pointed out, loving a language and having fun with it is not the same as creating a successful business. Aaron (the CEO) and I have been spending a lot of time discussing business strategies. Everything we do is a deliberate step towards self-sustainability and profitability. All our work would be for naught if we couldn’t create a steady stream of revenue. It is a tremendous task, but we have experience and we are quick learners. We talk to companies to help them figure out how they can improve their bottom lines using Haskell. We identify the obstacles in the way of adoption of Haskell and help overcome them. If we can tap into even a small percentage of profits that the industry will make by adopting Haskell, our future is secured. And Simon P-J may stay assured that his investment will pay back manyfold.