[erlang-questions] clarify: Ericsson Erlang vision/strategy

Andreas Hillqvist andreas.hillqvist@REDACTED
Fri Dec 14 11:12:37 CET 2007

Thank you for your answer.

I like the semantics of Erlang encourages you to develop your system
into small concurrent processes/servers/services in a easy and natural
This small concurrent processes can be easily run simultaneously.

I believe this kind of process semantics will eventually replace the
thread-library way of doing concurrency.

Kind Regards
Andreas Hillqvist

2007/12/11, Ulf Wiger (TN/EAB) <ulf.wiger@REDACTED>:
> Some of your questions can't readily be answered, since it
> would mean revealing proprietary information.
> I will try to give you some hints.
> Andreas Hillqvist skrev:
> > As far as I know, currently Ericsson maintain and develops
>  > Erlang/OTP. They have employee professional people that get
>  > payed to maintain and develops Erlang/OTP.
> > But is there a risk that Erlang/OTP will be drooped in the
>  > future?
> Ericsson has a considerable number of Erlang-based products
> in commercial operation, and these products have a considerable
> life span. "Dropping" Erlang (as in suddenly), is pretty much
> out of the question. You would notice it years in advance as
> a move of Erlang into "maintenance mode" first.
> > If Ericsson's would drooped Erlang would the Erlang community
>  > sustain the quality of maintains and development of Erlang/OTP?
> Considering the above, I'd say it's a hypothetical question.
> As long as Erlang is going strong, and is evidently one of the
> hottest technologies for multi-core architectures, it is likely
> to have a vibrant user community - but this also makes it less
> likely that Ericsson would "drop it". If the Open Source
> community stagnates, Ericsson is more likely to move away from
> Erlang, and the community would then also be ill equipped to
> maintain it at the current level.
> > The reason why I am asking this is because of Jimmy Nilsson's blog.
> >     Jimmy Nilsson's blog - Erlang, take 2
> >     (http://jimmynilsson.com/blog/posts/Erlang.htm)
> >     "... since even Ericsson, the company where Erlang was developed,
> >      decided to go another route after a while."
> This is not really a correct account. There was never any question
> of Ericsson moving to replace mainstream tools wholesale with
> Erlang. Ericsson did start two large development projects using
> Erlang in the mid 90s. Both products are still being developed and
> sold, and other products have been developed using Erlang since.
> Ericsson also advertises the use of Erlang at
> http://www.ericsson.com/technology/open_source/index.shtml
> Ericsson also sponsors the ProTEST EU project, which is very
> much based on Erlang technology. This project will run for
> about three years.
> http://www.erlang.se/euc/07/papers/1600Hughes.pdf
> (John, your slides don't come across very well as PDF.)
> > I have also heard the story/rumor of the management at Ericsson
>  > baned the use of Erlang in new products. But dose this apply today?
> It is a documented fact that Erlang was banned for new product
> development within a part of Ericsson. This was 9 years ago.
> I know of very few technology choices that are considered
> relevant 9 years after the fact.
> > Has not Erlang/OTP been part of Ericsson's success for core
>  > network products, outperforming competitors?
> I believe so.
> > Telecom is moving towards Long Term Evolution(LTE), where an aimed to
> > is to be an all-IP network.
> > How dose an Erlang/OTP IP switching product stack up against Cisco C++
> > (or what they are using) product?
> I'm sorry, but that question would have to be put through Ericsson's
> sales channels. I'm sure they would like to tell you how our products
> compare to Cisco's, if you're a prospective customer. ;-)
> > Is Erlang/OTP the natural/best choice to develop core network
>  > products for LTE or will Ericsson have to adapt and move away
>  > from Erlang?
> There are a lot of factors that weigh in on technology choices.
> One of them is of course existing market share. LTE represents
> a change in network topology, and any vendor will of course want
> to look at whether existing products should be adapted to a new
> standard or replaced with a new product. The word "evolution" is
> significant here, I believe. Most of the products using Erlang
> within Ericsson will not be affected by LTE at all.
> BR,
> Ulf W

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