[erlang-questions] Sexp front end for Erlang?
Tue Oct 17 16:49:45 CEST 2006
Garry Hodgson wrote:
> Peter Mechlenborg <> wrote:
>> At the company I work for, we have recently started implementing a
>> domain specific language with an Erlang back end and have a prototype
>> compiler written in Common Lisp. Instead of generating Erlang source
>> code directly, the compiler has two phases with an sexp layer in
>> between, that is, the first phase in the compiler generates sexp's
>> corresponding to Erlang code, and the second phase generates Erlang
>> source code from the sexp's.
> i can't answer your question, but i'm curious why you didn't just develop
> the compiler in erlang? seems like it would've been simpler, and easier
> to integrate with the back end functionality you want.
Well, mostly because I like Common Lisp a lot, although I must confess
that Erlang has gained a lot on CL since I started using it, it's a
great language. Another reason for doing it in CL was that the
prototype dsl uses sexp's as syntax, so I didn't have to build a parser.
(I could probably have used Erlang terms instead of sexp's to get the
same advantage, and building the dsl as an internal language in Erlang
might have made somethings easier, but I also think it would have made
the coupling between the dsl and the back end stronger than we would want).
I think that an sexp-erlang might be a fun idea, particularly in
connection with macros, but then again, it might just be me having crazy
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