Experience Report: Haskell in Computational Biology
(An Experience Report provides evidence that functional
programming really works, or it describes obstacles that prevent)
functional programming from working.)
Haskell gives computational biologists
the flexibility and rapid prototyping of a scripting
language, plus the performance of native code.
In our experience, higher-order functions, lazy evaluation, and
monads really worked, but
profiling and debugging presented obstacles.
Also, Haskell libraries vary greatly:
memoization combinators and parallel-evaluation
strategies helped us a lot,
but other, nameless libraries mostly got in our way.
Despite the obstacles and the uncertain quality of some libraries,
made it easy for us to develop new algorithms in computational
The paper is available as
US Letter PDF (446K).