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Monthly Downloads: 22
Programming language: Haskell
License: MIT License
Tags: Web    

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README

Intro

An HTTP server can be defined as a request parser, which produces a response, while managing the application state. As simple as that. This library exploits that fact to produce a very simple and flexible API, which can be executed on top of any specific HTTP-server implementation (e.g., Warp).

The Why

Composition

Haskell is famous for being best at parsing things. It's all due to its great abstractions like Applicative, Alternative and Monad, which let us approach the infinitely complex problems with decomposition. Yet for some reason the area of web-routing hasn't been approached that way much before.

So having composable parsers why do we have to downgrade to primitive uncomposable patterns like the following?

get "/user/:id" ...

Yet a question arises then: having already seen the textual parsers, which we all know and love, why can't we parse a request in the same fashion instead:

do
  segmentIs "user"
  userID <- segment
  methodIsGet
  ...

Type-safety

The uncomposable approach suffers from another problem: it's not type-checked. Some libraries introduce TemplateHaskell or complex abstractions, even type-level programming to fix that, complicating the APIs.

The "Composable Request Parser" approach doesn't require any of that. Precise type-checking is already there.

Performance

Libraries, which don't provide composable request parsers are bound to reparse the same things for each route. E.g.,

get "/user/:id/profile" ...
get "/user/:id/status" ...
get "/user/:id/details" ...

In the example above to get to the third route, the request method needs to be matched three times and the /user/:id/ part of the route needs to be reparsed.

None of that applies to a composable parser, which "strelka" provides.

Simplicity

Web-routing is not rocket science. It doesn't necessarily require any advanced programming concepts like type-level programming with higher-kinded types. A router can be implemented using the familiar simple concepts.

Demonstrations

Helloworld

The following application shows how you can make a web server, which responds to the /hi and /bye routes with either HTML or plain text depending on what the user specifies in the "Accept" request header.

You can clone and run the according project from the "strelka-helloworld" repo.

module Main where

import Prelude
import qualified Strelka.RequestParsing as A
import qualified Strelka.ResponseBuilding as B
import qualified Strelka.WAI as C

main =
  C.strelkaServer 3000 (return . Right . runIdentity) route
  where
    route =
      A.segmentIs "hi" $> B.html "<h1>Hello world</h1>" <|>
      pure B.notFoundStatus

While this simple demo shows how easy it is to implement a simple web-server, there's too many things happening in the same module. This library was designed with separation of concerns in mind, and its every component facilitates that. So for a more correct and thorough demonstration its suggested to check out the following section.

Thorough Demo

For a thorough demonstration of the library and suggested usage patterns check out the following project: https://github.com/nikita-volkov/strelka-demo.

Known Integrations