After a pandemic-adjacent interregnum, hackage server is now again being maintained a bit more regularly with occasional feature updates and plans for the future.
In the current server release (which had to coincide with a migration to a new machine) there’s a number of smaller cosmetic improvements, as well as a few more noticeable features – largely stemming from deployment of the work in last summer’s GSOC. Here are a few things I wanted to highlight:
The candidates feature still isn’t as polished as we’d like, but it is certainly in better shape – main package pages now list candidates, and users’ individual pages also include links to their package candidates. The candidates index page had been broken for some time and is now fixed. Candidates auto-delete as candidates on publish, and also the docbuilder runs on candidates! (However a nice UI for looking at candidate build-reports is still not implemented). Furthermore, the workflow for maintaining and releasing candidates is somewhat streamlined.
Builds and Badges
The docbuilder now runs tests and coverage as well when possible, and a package’s hackage page will display badges with status of tests as well as coverage and doc availability. Furthermore, now when you delete docs and reset the failure count, they will autorebuild – i.e. one need not request a manual reset of the docbuilder’s previously locally-maintained failure state.
For rendering README.md and changelog files we now use John MacFarlane’s wonderful commonmark-extensions package to render markdown, allowing us to offer a fairly full set of so-called “github flavored markdown” including (sanitized) inline html, inline images, tables, github-style reference links, and some other niceities. Since many people author their md files first and foremost for display by github, this should be a nice improvement to existing display as well as open possibilities for package authors in the future.
For end-users (rather than bots) we also now have a better mechanism to attempt to always redirect http to https connections, which I know some people had been asking for for some time.
The hackage server codebase is scary and there’s a plan on how to modernize it, although many details aren’t pinned down and there’s certainly no immediate timetable for when we’ll start work on it (or when it may finish). But even as is, there’s plenty of small low-hanging fruit to work on, which improves the user experience of all the many thousands of daily hackage users.
Interested people can take a look at the “good first issues” tag, or attempt to roll up their sleeves on plenty else as well. I’m around in the usual irc channels to lend a hand, and would be happy to help you get set up. Further, if you’d like to help in a more serious way, these issues are a place to just warm up a bit and get familiar.
Happy hacking, all!