I’ve been investigating F# recently and have been incredibly impressed.
I’m sure a lot of OCaml developers will disagree, but to me it is a much more practical version of that language.
It seems to take the best of OCaml and improve on it, for example:
Proper multicore support out of the box
One standard library (.NET)
Units of measure
I understand your argument, and will agree that some of your points are in fact problematic but I’ll disagree on one point:
best of OCaml
I find that taking an ML like OCaml and ripping out the M part is a pretty big change and rather not for the better. Also, personally, ripping out the O part of OCaml is also sad because objects are rather interesting and fit surprisingly well into the language, some syntactic weirdities notwithstanding.
F# does support objects, although I think they are implemented a little differently in order to support .Net compatibility.
What sort of features is F# missing compared to OCaml objects?
For myself, I have a hard time working in a language that doesn’t have an ML-style module system. It’s just SO GOOD.
I’d like to see an alternative CLR and an ecosystem of desktop Unix applications written in C#, unbesmirched by FUD.
Please don’t use sarcasm, it’s rarely constructive.
The FUD around .net carries over to Mono and any other C# implementation, since it’s all patent-based. (Of course Gnome is built on FUD in the first place, since Qt has been freely licensed for decades now.)
How is Gnome built on FUD?
It was started (in part) due to worries about the Qt license which, at the time, was controlled and sold under a proprietary license with a carve-out for free software. Not saying I agree that Gnome is “built on FUD”, just explaining what GP meant.
For a bit more on what @glesica is referring to, see Wikipedia, which provides a nice summary. I can remember the Qt license issue being quite controversial at the time.
It was a real issue at the time. But the Gnome history page and mission statement imply it’s still a current one, which is misleading to say the least (and the misconception seems to have spread even to recent free-software converts, and no doubt affects their choice of which projects to contribute to). If Gnome had followed their mission as stated they would have folded into KDE once the licensing issue was resolved.