Erlang Open Internet Platform

Chris Pressey <>
Sat Feb 17 00:14:09 CET 2001


Sean Hinde wrote:
> Chris Wrote>
> > OTP = Open Telecom Platform.  Telecom = Telecommunications =
> > communicating over a remote distance.  In what way is the
> > Internet not a
> > form of telecommunications...?  ;-)
> Yes, but it seems that just about every Fred public wants to do "internet
> programming" whereas "Telecoms programming" is something else entirely.

Agreed, there is that perception.  But I'd rather try to change the
perception of what is "telecomm" than the perception of what is
"Erlang/OTP".

Also, I'm not certain I'd like every "Fred" using Erlang for
everything!  I don't mean that as an elitist remark, only that the
pressure placed on Erlang to please everyone would be enormous.  I'd
rather see the right people using Erlang for the right things.

> I certainly agree with comments that it is hard work to divine the power of
> OTP from the standard docs. Worth it but hard work indeed.

Also agreed.  Up until now, I was under the impression that OTP was
simply the name of the open-source implementation (compiler+runtime) of
Erlang, but I guess there's a lot more to it than just that - its the
definition of the entire environment, including applications?

> Presentation as "Design Patterns" as in Ulf Ekström's thesis may
> make things clearer.

Yes.  That paper really clarified some things for me.  Also, many
programmers learn by experimentation.  I think if the "barriers to
entry" were lowered - e.g. if you didn't have to go in and "hack" source
code, which is always distasteful - that might be enough of an initial
push to get it going in a more accessible direction.

> > Also, there is so much hype around "internet solutions" these days; I
> > was attracted to Erlang partly because it seems to be able to
> > avoid that
> > stigma by being more general than just that.
> That is very nice to hear. I hope this reflects a more general outlook..

It would be nice, but seems doubtful - I'm a bit of an outsider.  :-)  I
get the impression that it's worse here in North America, but I see many
programmers choose their language(s) because of their jobs, and many
projects pick their language based on the cost to hire programmers for
that language.  I'm disappointed that this circular logic does not in
the least consider the language's strengths and weaknesses.  It assumes
any language is good enough for any project, while in fact that is not
the case, or we'd only have one language.

_chris

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