OCaml.org Newsletter: October 2023

Welcome to the October 2023 edition of the OCaml.org newsletter! This update has been compiled by the OCaml.org team. You can find previous updates on Discuss.

Our goal is to make OCaml.org the best resource for anyone who wants to get started and be productive in OCaml. The OCaml.org newsletter provides an update on our progress towards that goal and an overview of the changes we are working on.

We couldn't do it without all the amazing OCaml community members who help us review, revise, and create better OCaml documentation. Your feedback enables us to better prioritize our work and make progress towards our goal. Thank you!

This month, our priorities were:

  • Learn Area: We continue our efforts to make OCaml.org a great resource for learning OCaml. This month, we've validated a new version of the designs for the Learn area, and we've published two new documentation pages!
  • Outreachy Internship Application Period: OCaml.org is participating in the Outreachy Internship Program with two internship projects. As part of the application period, we've received tons of fantastic contributions from Outreachy applicants!
  • General Improvements: As usual, we also worked on general maintenance and improvements based on user feedback, so we're highlighting some of our work below.

Learn Area

1. Redesign of the Learn Area

After going back to the drawing board on the new designs for the Learn area, we've designed a new version of the landing page, alongside updated variants of the Community and Package landing pages, to ensure they are visually consistent. We've validated the new design direction and will be updating the designs for the rest of the Learn area pages next. Once the designs are available for all the pages, we'll be ready to start implementing them. We're very excited to get the new version of the pages live; we hope you are too! Stay tuned!

| Learn | Community | Package | | -------- | -------- | -------- | | ocamlorg-october-image1 | ocamlorg-october-image2 | ocamlorg-october-image3|

Relevant PRs and Activities:

2. OCaml Documentation

Last month, we announced the publication of the new Get Started documentation. After publishing this section, we're turning our focus to the Language section of the documentation.

This month, we've published two new documentation pages: Basic Data Types and Functions & Values. Together, they teach the basics of OCaml from the very beginning, starting with what a value and a function are. Having witnessed newcomers such as Outreachy interns struggle to learn OCaml from the OCaml.org documentation because it required a lot of prior programming knowledge, we're excited to have this new content available for Outreachy interns and all newcomers. This is a first version of the pages, and we've already received excellent feedback to improve it. Don't hesitate to share more, whether you're a beginner struggling to get up and running, or an OCaml developer with opinions on how we should teach OCaml!

We're currently reviewing two other documentation pages on Mutability and Polymorphic Variants. They should be ready for community review soon.

Stay tuned, and please, keep the feedback on the new documentation coming; it's been a blast to see so much engagement from the community!

Relevant PRs and Activities:


OCaml.org is participating in the Outreachy Internship Program. Outreachy provides internships to people subject to systemic bias and impacted by underrepresentation in the technical industry where they are living.

A substantial part of this month has been spent on creating issues, reviewing pull requests, and mentoring Outreachy applicants on the OCaml Discord server.

The contributions include small fixes, implementing Figma designs, and small feature additions. Notably, the OCaml Changelog now has an RSS feed, and some outstanding designs for the package area have been applied.

8 out of the 21 medium difficulty issues have been completed in October, while only 6 out of 30 simple outreachy issues remain open. For the remaining issues, we will support the contributors in finishing their work, and free any abandoned issues so that community members can pick them up.

Relevant PRs and Activities:

General Improvements

This month, we’re welcoming 1 new contributor:

Relevant PRs and Activities:

  • We now log a message instead of crashing when failing to parse the opam file - ocaml/ocaml.org#1575