Clojure vs Groovy

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Clojure

1.3K
1.2K
+ 1
1.1K
Groovy

1.3K
657
+ 1
202
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Clojure vs Groovy: What are the differences?

Clojure: A dynamic programming language that targets the Java Virtual Machine. Clojure is designed to be a general-purpose language, combining the approachability and interactive development of a scripting language with an efficient and robust infrastructure for multithreaded programming. Clojure is a compiled language - it compiles directly to JVM bytecode, yet remains completely dynamic. Clojure is a dialect of Lisp, and shares with Lisp the code-as-data philosophy and a powerful macro system; Groovy: A dynamic language for the Java platform. Groovy builds upon the strengths of Java but has additional power features inspired by languages like Python, Ruby and Smalltalk. It makes modern programming features available to Java developers with almost-zero learning curve.

Clojure and Groovy can be categorized as "Languages" tools.

"It is a lisp" is the top reason why over 96 developers like Clojure, while over 38 developers mention "Java platform" as the leading cause for choosing Groovy.

Clojure and Groovy are both open source tools. It seems that Clojure with 7.85K GitHub stars and 1.25K forks on GitHub has more adoption than Groovy with 1.49K GitHub stars and 414 GitHub forks.

According to the StackShare community, Clojure has a broader approval, being mentioned in 95 company stacks & 80 developers stacks; compared to Groovy, which is listed in 79 company stacks and 73 developer stacks.

Decisions about Clojure and Groovy

We’re a new startup so we need to be able to deliver quick changes as we find our product market fit. We’ve also got to ensure that we’re moving money safely, and keeping perfect records. The technologies we’ve chosen mix mature but well maintained frameworks like Django, with modern web-first and api-first front ends like GraphQL, NextJS, and Chakra. We use a little Golang sparingly in our backend to ensure that when we interact with financial services, we do so with statically compiled, strongly typed, and strictly limited and reviewed code.

You can read all about it in our linked blog post.

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Pros of Clojure
Pros of Groovy
  • 116
    It is a lisp
  • 99
    Persistent data structures
  • 98
    Concise syntax
  • 88
    jvm-based language
  • 87
    Concurrency
  • 80
    Interactive repl
  • 75
    Code is data
  • 61
    Open source
  • 58
    Lazy data structures
  • 54
    Macros
  • 47
    Functional
  • 22
    Simplistic
  • 21
    Immutable by default
  • 19
    Excellent collections
  • 18
    Fast-growing community
  • 14
    Multiple host languages
  • 14
    Simple (not easy!)
  • 13
    Practical Lisp
  • 9
    Because it's really fun to use
  • 9
    Addictive
  • 9
    Community
  • 8
    It creates Reusable code
  • 8
    Web friendly
  • 8
    Rapid development
  • 7
    Minimalist
  • 5
    Java interop
  • 5
    Programmable programming language
  • 4
    Regained interest in programming
  • 3
    Compiles to JavaScript
  • 3
    EDN
  • 2
    Share a lot of code with clojurescript/use on frontend
  • 43
    Java platform
  • 32
    Much more productive than java
  • 28
    Concise and readable
  • 27
    Very little code needed for complex tasks
  • 21
    Dynamic language
  • 12
    Nice dynamic syntax for the jvm
  • 9
    Very fast
  • 6
    Easy to setup
  • 6
    Can work with JSON as an object
  • 5
    Literal Collections
  • 5
    Supports closures (lambdas)
  • 2
    Syntactic sugar
  • 2
    Developer Friendly
  • 2
    Interoperable with Java
  • 2
    Optional static typing

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Cons of Clojure
Cons of Groovy
  • 9
    Cryptic stacktraces
  • 4
    Need to wrap basically every java lib
  • 3
    LISP!!!!!!!!
  • 3
    Good code heavily relies on local conventions
  • 3
    Toxic community
  • 2
    Slow application startup
  • 2
    Tonns of abandonware
  • 1
    Usable only with REPL
  • 1
    Hiring issues
  • 1
    Bad documented libs
  • 1
    Macros are overused by devs
  • 1
    Tricky profiling
  • 1
    IDE with high learning curve
  • 1
    Configuration bolierplate
  • 1
    Conservative community
  • 0
    Have no good and fast fmt
  • 3
    Groovy Code can be slower than Java Code
  • 1
    Objects cause stateful/heap mess

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What is Clojure?

Clojure is designed to be a general-purpose language, combining the approachability and interactive development of a scripting language with an efficient and robust infrastructure for multithreaded programming. Clojure is a compiled language - it compiles directly to JVM bytecode, yet remains completely dynamic. Clojure is a dialect of Lisp, and shares with Lisp the code-as-data philosophy and a powerful macro system.

What is Groovy?

It is a powerful multi-faceted programming language for the JVM platform. It supports a spectrum of programming styles incorporating features from dynamic languages such as optional and duck typing, but also static compilation and static type checking at levels similar to or greater than Java through its extensible static type checker. It aims to greatly increase developer productivity with many powerful features but also a concise, familiar and easy to learn syntax.

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What companies use Clojure?
What companies use Groovy?
See which teams inside your own company are using Clojure or Groovy.
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What tools integrate with Clojure?
What tools integrate with Groovy?

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What are some alternatives to Clojure and Groovy?
Scala
Scala is an acronym for “Scalable Language”. This means that Scala grows with you. You can play with it by typing one-line expressions and observing the results. But you can also rely on it for large mission critical systems, as many companies, including Twitter, LinkedIn, or Intel do. To some, Scala feels like a scripting language. Its syntax is concise and low ceremony; its types get out of the way because the compiler can infer them.
Haskell
It is a general purpose language that can be used in any domain and use case, it is ideally suited for proprietary business logic and data analysis, fast prototyping and enhancing existing software environments with correct code, performance and scalability.
Common Lisp
Lisp was originally created as a practical mathematical notation for computer programs, influenced by the notation of Alonzo Church's lambda calculus. It quickly became the favored programming language for artificial intelligence (AI) research. As one of the earliest programming languages, Lisp pioneered many ideas in computer science, including tree data structures, automatic storage management, dynamic typing, conditionals, higher-order functions, recursion, and the self-hosting compiler. [source: wikipedia]
Elixir
Elixir leverages the Erlang VM, known for running low-latency, distributed and fault-tolerant systems, while also being successfully used in web development and the embedded software domain.
Julia
Julia is a high-level, high-performance dynamic programming language for technical computing, with syntax that is familiar to users of other technical computing environments. It provides a sophisticated compiler, distributed parallel execution, numerical accuracy, and an extensive mathematical function library.
See all alternatives