[erlang-questions] Sexp front end for Erlang?

Jeff Wood <>
Tue Oct 17 21:49:14 CEST 2006


Peter Mechlenborg wrote:

>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 
>thoughts :-).
>
>Have fun,
>
>  --  Peter
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You can always go take a look @ Termite ... it's an implementation of 
much of Erlang ( core ) under Gambit scheme ...

not "exactly" what you're after, but I figured it was worth mentioning.

jd




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