It is not my intention to criticize anyone or blame people about any decission.
It is just that this idea crosses my mind every time I want to start a pet-project in ocaml, or I read a new announce about rescript.
Also, I’m asking here because I’m almost an “outsider” of the Ocaml community and my perspective may be wrong looking from the outside. To put you an example, I’m a JS developer and I am tired of reading about the JS fatigue. Seems to be a problem for people that wants to get into the ecosystem, but once you are on it, you just use whatever you like and forget about the rest. I guess if this is a similar case.
The point of my thinking, and what brings me to make this question is that, when I discovered Ocaml through reason I was very happy. Reason was very familiar for me, and it was equivalent to Ocaml, so I could learn Reason, then transition to Ocaml. When I learnt more about Ocaml, Reason was still making sense for building the UI parts using the React integration. I decided to let the ecosystem mature a bit and come back when Reason were more mature (better IDE support, more bindings, etc). Meanwhile I just used ocaml for some CLIs.
For me, the toolchain was already confusing enough when rescript appeared, and the feeling that I had is that is that it was like starting from the ground up again. The worst part is that I could not just ignore it and continue using Reason and Ocaml because now Rescript is the official way to go for web. This is taking out attention out of my favorite syntax (Ocaml) and it’s taking advantage of the Reason name to position itself.
Every decision I read about the language seems to move it further away from the Ocaml mindset and put it closer to JS. I have the feeling that this is not anymore a toolchain on top of Ocaml but just a new language limited to the web, just like Elm is, and like Elm, decisions seems to be leaded by a very small set of people. I don’t think the web needs a new language, people is tired of frameworks coming out, and the same probably applies to languages.
Being an Ocaml enthusiast and a web developer I don’t like the idea of having to learn a third language just for the times I have to write an UI, or having to use the very weird
%% things that you have to do if you want to use the Ocaml syntax, which who knows when they will decide to change again.
This is (from my react dev perspective) a very small community, which seems to split every few years into smaller and smaller ones. Everytime it splits it makes things harder to newcomers. Sure, it may be easy for the involved ones to understand where all this three flavours are coming from, but I had a very hard time understanding the difference between Ocaml and Reason when I started, I can’t imagine how confusing will look now.
What I want is to read opinions and feelings from the people who is inside the community. Maybe I see things wrong from the outside.