(Include Wikipedia introduction, which is clearer (to me) and link to TaPL)
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Revision as of 19:44, 26 August 2012
Wikipedia says, "In type theory, a kind is the type of a type constructor or, less commonly, the type of a higher-order type operator. A kind system is essentially a simply typed lambda calculus 'one level up,' endowed with a primitive type, denoted * and called 'type,' which is the kind of any (monomorphic) data type."
Ordinary types have kind *. Type constructors have kind P -> Q, where P and Q are kinds. For instance:
Int :: * Maybe :: * -> * Maybe Bool :: * a -> a :: *  :: * -> * (->) :: * -> * -> *
In Haskell 98, * is the only inhabited kind, that is, all values have types of kind *. GHC introduces another inhabited kind, #, for unboxed types.