[erlang-questions] Tracing and debugging

Vlad Dumitrescu vladdu55@REDACTED
Tue Jan 13 13:36:25 CET 2015

Hi all!

I just got a crazy idea and I think it's not that crazy, but I'm willing to
get feedback on that :-)

The main reason I use the debugger is to check that the intermediary values
in a computation are the expected ones. The alternative (which works
without messing up timeouts) is to print out values at points of interest,
but it is messy (there's a lot of boilerplate to type and the interesting
code becomes hard to read).

So, I thought, what if, instead of interpreting a module in order to debug
it, we compile it with a special parse transform that inserts tracing calls
after each expression in the code, automatically keeping track of the
variables visible in the scope and their values?

The output can be via io:format, et:report_event, or something else

Could this "trogging" or "logtracing" be useful, or am I delusional? Maybe
there already is such a thing, the Erlang ecosystem is getting difficult to
keep in the working memory :-)

best regards,
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