[erlang-questions] Forget Erlang on the Java VM. More language on the Erlang VM are needed!

Bjorn Gustavsson bjorn@REDACTED
Thu Nov 29 17:19:31 CET 2007

"James Hague" <james.hague@REDACTED> writes:

> And now a question: what's the best target for compiling to?  Real
> Erlang?  Core Erlang?  BEAM?  I'm probably alone in this opinion, but
> I think a light layer of syntactic sugar on top of raw, BEAM code
> would be a fun and productive language--and even more flexible than
> Erlang.  But relying on the BEAM VM to remain stable isn't reasonable.

I would say that it depends on the source language, and how much fun you want
to have writing code generation and optimizations passes. 

The BEAM VM evolves only slowly. We add new instructions in one release,
and only several releases later will we remove the obsolete instructions.
So in practice it is quite stable.

The mandatory beam_validator pass (introduced in an R10B) will help
catching most misuse of the instruction set that would cause the BEAM
emulator to mysteriously crash at run-time. Without the beam_validator,
it would be dangerous to have a light layer of syntatic sugar on top
of the BEAM instructions.


Björn Gustavsson, Erlang/OTP, Ericsson AB

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