[erlang-questions] node.js vs erlang

Miles Fidelman mfidelman@REDACTED
Thu Jun 19 15:51:47 CEST 2014

Loïc Hoguin wrote:
> On 06/19/2014 03:29 PM, Miles Fidelman wrote:
>> Loïc Hoguin wrote:
>>> On 06/18/2014 10:22 PM, Kenneth Lundin wrote:
>>>> That is what I meant, you are using a more complex setup with 
>>>> Erlang in
>>>> order to get more features. So the comparision with other languages
>>>> "simple setup" is not fair.
>>> The setup is more complex but the way we get there isn't. Have you
>>> read the getting started chapter[1]? The release part is smaller than
>>> it would take to explain "erl -run" or "erl -s": we don't have to
>>> write extra code for it, we don't have to manually setup paths, we
>>> don't have to deal with reltool, and so on. It's literally "create
>>> relx.config, put this in it, run make again". Bam you got a release.
>>> That part can't get any simpler.
>>> Erlang *is* more complex to use than many other languages (it is still
>>> simpler than C, C++ and the like though). Either you do things
>>> manually by downloading dependencies manually and such, or you use a
>>> build system like erlang.mk (or rebar) to automate things which
>>> requires you to create an OTP application.
>> I think that's highly debatable.  At least from my perspective, Erlang
>> ISN'T more complex than many other languages, and is perhaps simpler,
>> when you factor in the entire ecosystem required to do any kind of
>> serious work.
> I didn't repeat but what I said was about getting started, and in 
> particular in a web development setting, where pretty much every other 
> platform just require you to drop a file in the right folder and 
> you're done.

Except that's simply not true, unless you're talking about dropping HTML 
files (maybe including JavaScript) into an Apache directory - and even 
that assumes that Apache is already set up.

More commonly, we're talking about:
- select a platform (Drupal, Wordpress, Joomla, Plone), install (and, 
guess what, not all that easy - particularly if you're wiring it up with 
- select and install a database
- configure the platform and database
- selection and configure modues
- define pages and behaviors through GUI interfaces
- and then we're into the world of custom module development

The underlying language doesn't enter into the picture at all, except for:
- install-time dependencies
- writing custom modules
- things that are external to the web-site such as database applications

At which point:

> Erlang is simpler than C for sure, and I don't know (nor care) about 
> Java but I wouldn't be surprised if it was simpler too. Only those 
> aren't really used for web development. (Some people do, but you're a 
> lot more likely to find a PHP web developer than a C/Java one, at 
> least in my experience.)

What exactly are we comparing here?  Programming language <> 
run-time-environment <> (web) platform <> development environment.

In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.
In practice, there is.   .... Yogi Berra

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