[erlang-questions] Erlang is *not* a implementation of the Actor model Re: Go vs Erlang for distribution

Robert Virding <>
Mon Jun 23 02:27:28 CEST 2014


We had never heard of the actor model, at least I hadn't. We had other
inputs, amongst others Eripascal which an internal Ericsson version of
Pascal which had processes and messages.

Hewitt got a lot of things wrong in his description of Erlang.

Robert



On 22 June 2014 23:58, Peer Stritzinger <> wrote:

> On 2014-06-22 02:07:12 +0000, Miles Fidelman said:
>
>> I see Erlang as an implementation of the Actor model, a la Carl Hewitt -
>>
>
> This crops up again and again but still isn't true.
>
> Erlang does *not* implement Actors but processes with links/monitors
> mailboxes and messages, which are not equivalent to actors.
>
> Processes: sequence of function calls interspresed with (selective)
> receives that pick out someting out of the mailbox.
>
> Actor: has to handle every message immediately, the actions a message
> triggers are happening concurrently, nothing longer running or sequential
> allowed.
>
> Hewitt says himself that Erlang does not implement Actors:
> http://arxiv.org/pdf/1008.1459.pdf
>
> He picks on different things like "silent process failure" instead of
> exceptions (which don't make much sense for somone familiar with Erlang)
> and that Actors seem to be garbage collected if they are "unneded" probably
> no longer referenced from the outside and Erlang needs "internal
> termination".
>
> Hewitt writes mostly what he finds lacking but on the other hand I find
> the process with mailbox, selective receive and links/monitors (not ver
> silent ;-) more powerful that simple Actors.
>
> Also as aside from what I've heard Erlangs creators didn't look at Actors
> when creating.
>
> Cheers,
> -- Peer
>
>
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