continued init (RE: OTP or not to OTP)

Shawn Pearce <>
Mon Mar 3 15:23:02 CET 2003

Sean Hinde <> wrote:
> But yes, otherwise you are correct of course. I do believe that we are
> slightly kidding ourselves when we say that Erlang makes concurrent
> programming easy* - it is easy (ish) to make simple 'object' type processes
> but it is possible to get into an enormous mess of deadlocks and so on if
> you try to get too tricky. This to me is another reason why gen_servers and
> so on are a good thing - they stop people trying to get too complex and then
> find that after a couple of months some weird network conition occurs which
> deadlocks the whole thing.

Ah, now we need gen_deadlock to perform deadlock detection by polling
gen_* processes with alive operations to verify they are still sane,
and if not, kill them so the supervisor restarts them.  :)

When can we expect to see gen_deadlock?  :)

> * Vastly easier than the pthreads type model favoured elsewhere of
> course,  but still not VB easy

You can do concurrent programming in VB?  You must be insane Sean.  :)

What I think Erlang does well is hide the easy stuff, so we only deal
with the hard stuff.  In other words, if we were doing this in C with
pthreads, we wouldn't have time to address the hard stuff, we'd only
have time to address the easy stuff, and ship.  Perhaps that's one
reason OTP works so well.


  You will overcome the attacks of jealous associates.

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