[erlang-questions] LFE - Lisp Flavoured Erlang released

Robert Virding rvirding@REDACTED
Sun Mar 2 02:00:06 CET 2008

I have finally released LFE, Lisp Flavoured Erlang, which is a lisp syntax
front-end to the Erlang compiler. Code produced with it is compatible with
"normal" Erlang code. The is an LFE-mode for Emacs and the lfe-mode.el file
is include in the distribution. Most things seem to work but some things
have not been done yet:

- The interpreter does handle recursive letrecs, binaries, receive or try.
- There is no lisp shell.
- Documentation!

Yet. The system will be updated as new features are added. This is the 1st
release so there is much left to do.

I have include the existing documentation lfe_guide.txt in this mail. There
are a number of LFE test files and a version of the LFE interpreter written
in LFE as examples of code. There are also a number of issues which need to
be decided for the next version and I have included a file lfe_issues.txt
which describe them in this mail. Both files are in the distribution.

Note that while this this lisp has been inspired by Scheme (one of the
issues) it is a NOT Scheme, it is Erlang with a lisp syntax and many nice
lisp features. Not for that matter is it Common Lisp. In fact features of
the Erlang engine mean that it is actually impossible to implement full
Scheme of CL. No, they shouldn't be changed or added.

It was quite writing Erlang code in lisp and I could easily consider using a
lisp syntax for Erlang. I suppose it depends where your preferences lye. It
was also easy to get into the traditional lisp habit of using long names for
everything which I personally think is not a Good Thing. Perhaps we should
do AFE, Arc Flavoured Erlang, instead? Although I think they have gone too
far and missed what makes programs easy to read.

Macros are very nice, and it is easy to generate LFE code, which is one of
the benefits of lisp syntax.

LFE also shows that it would probably be possible to write other front-ends
inspired by other languages, though why anyone should want to I don't know.
Perhaps back to a real Prolog syntax again.

The system can be found in the "User Contributions" section at trapexit.org,
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