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Clojure vs Spring Boot: 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; Spring Boot: Create Spring-powered, production-grade applications and services with absolute minimum fuss. Spring Boot makes it easy to create stand-alone, production-grade Spring based Applications that you can "just run". We take an opinionated view of the Spring platform and third-party libraries so you can get started with minimum fuss. Most Spring Boot applications need very little Spring configuration.

Clojure can be classified as a tool in the "Languages" category, while Spring Boot is grouped under "Frameworks (Full Stack)".

"It is a lisp", "Concise syntax" and "Persistent data structures" are the key factors why developers consider Clojure; whereas "Powerful and handy", "Easy setup" and "Java" are the primary reasons why Spring Boot is favored.

Clojure and Spring Boot are both open source tools. It seems that Spring Boot with 39.8K GitHub stars and 25.8K forks on GitHub has more adoption than Clojure with 7.85K GitHub stars and 1.25K GitHub forks.

MIT, Intuit, and OpenGov are some of the popular companies that use Spring Boot, whereas Clojure is used by CircleCI, Groupon, and Zalando. Spring Boot has a broader approval, being mentioned in 333 company stacks & 615 developers stacks; compared to Clojure, which is listed in 95 company stacks and 80 developer stacks.

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 Spring Boot?

Spring Boot makes it easy to create stand-alone, production-grade Spring based Applications that you can "just run". We take an opinionated view of the Spring platform and third-party libraries so you can get started with minimum fuss. Most Spring Boot applications need very little Spring configuration.
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What are some alternatives to Clojure and Spring Boot?
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
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
Decisions about Clojure and Spring Boot
Jake Stein
Jake Stein
CEO at Stitch · | 13 upvotes · 82.5K views
atStitchStitch
Go
Go
Clojure
Clojure
JavaScript
JavaScript
Python
Python
Kubernetes
Kubernetes
AWS OpsWorks
AWS OpsWorks
Amazon EC2
Amazon EC2
Amazon Redshift
Amazon Redshift
Amazon S3
Amazon S3
Amazon RDS
Amazon RDS

Stitch is run entirely on AWS. All of our transactional databases are run with Amazon RDS, and we rely on Amazon S3 for data persistence in various stages of our pipeline. Our product integrates with Amazon Redshift as a data destination, and we also use Redshift as an internal data warehouse (powered by Stitch, of course).

The majority of our services run on stateless Amazon EC2 instances that are managed by AWS OpsWorks. We recently introduced Kubernetes into our infrastructure to run the scheduled jobs that execute Singer code to extract data from various sources. Although we tend to be wary of shiny new toys, Kubernetes has proven to be a good fit for this problem, and its stability, strong community and helpful tooling have made it easy for us to incorporate into our operations.

While we continue to be happy with Clojure for our internal services, we felt that its relatively narrow adoption could impede Singer's growth. We chose Python both because it is well suited to the task, and it seems to have reached critical mass among data engineers. All that being said, the Singer spec is language agnostic, and integrations and libraries have been developed in JavaScript, Go, and Clojure.

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Marwen Trabelsi
Marwen Trabelsi
Spring Boot
Spring Boot

I use Spring-Boot because it almost let you get things done quickly for a JVM-target project, with auto configuration components and dependency management starters. It is almost perfectly tailored for microservices applications development with a single unit deployment artifact (JAR) along with support for Service Registry and Discovery, Circuit Breaker pattern...

Any third-party library or any back-end service would perfectly integrate well since Spring offers integration support for most of mainstream services, let it be a RDBMS service, a NoSQL database, a Message Broker...

Coming to day-to-day development, Spring-Boot enjoys a great community so you can get support, direction, focused guidance from almost everywhere.

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C#
C#
Java
Java
JavaScript
JavaScript
ClojureScript
ClojureScript
Clojure
Clojure

I adopted Clojure and ClojureScript because:

  • it's 1 language, multiple platforms.
  • Simple syntax.
  • Designed to avoid unwanted side effects and bugs.
  • Immutable data-structures.
  • Compact code, very expressive.
  • Source code is data.
  • It has super-flexible macro.
  • Has metadata.
  • Interoperability with JavaScript, Java and C#.
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Praveen Mooli
Praveen Mooli
Technical Leader at Taylor and Francis · | 11 upvotes · 93.5K views
MongoDB Atlas
MongoDB Atlas
Amazon S3
Amazon S3
Amazon DynamoDB
Amazon DynamoDB
Amazon RDS
Amazon RDS
Serverless
Serverless
Docker
Docker
Terraform
Terraform
Travis CI
Travis CI
GitHub
GitHub
RxJS
RxJS
Angular 2
Angular 2
AWS Lambda
AWS Lambda
Amazon SQS
Amazon SQS
Amazon SNS
Amazon SNS
Amazon Kinesis Firehose
Amazon Kinesis Firehose
Amazon Kinesis
Amazon Kinesis
Flask
Flask
Python
Python
ExpressJS
ExpressJS
Node.js
Node.js
Spring Boot
Spring Boot
Java
Java
#Data
#Devops
#Webapps
#Eventsourcingframework
#Microservices
#Backend

We are in the process of building a modern content platform to deliver our content through various channels. We decided to go with Microservices architecture as we wanted scale. Microservice architecture style is an approach to developing an application as a suite of small independently deployable services built around specific business capabilities. You can gain modularity, extensive parallelism and cost-effective scaling by deploying services across many distributed servers. Microservices modularity facilitates independent updates/deployments, and helps to avoid single point of failure, which can help prevent large-scale outages. We also decided to use Event Driven Architecture pattern which is a popular distributed asynchronous architecture pattern used to produce highly scalable applications. The event-driven architecture is made up of highly decoupled, single-purpose event processing components that asynchronously receive and process events.

To build our #Backend capabilities we decided to use the following: 1. #Microservices - Java with Spring Boot , Node.js with ExpressJS and Python with Flask 2. #Eventsourcingframework - Amazon Kinesis , Amazon Kinesis Firehose , Amazon SNS , Amazon SQS, AWS Lambda 3. #Data - Amazon RDS , Amazon DynamoDB , Amazon S3 , MongoDB Atlas

To build #Webapps we decided to use Angular 2 with RxJS

#Devops - GitHub , Travis CI , Terraform , Docker , Serverless

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Interest over time
Reviews of Clojure and Spring Boot
Review ofSpring BootSpring Boot

spring boot allow my team to start building web services quickly and package it in a stand alone application

How developers use Clojure and Spring Boot
Avatar of Brandon Adams
Brandon Adams uses ClojureClojure

Cloure is a high level language that provides access to both the JVM (for server-side development) and javascript (for client-side development) with largely the same language. This is important to limit context switching and enable code-reuse during fast product cycles. Clojure is ideal for rapid prototyping and has a strong focus on stability, correctness, and concurrency. Tools like Schema and Spec enable well-structured development and high code confidence.

Avatar of Brian Fults
Brian Fults uses ClojureClojure

To complement Java. The REPL lets me interactively exercise Java code. I can write performant and safe libraries in Java, and then use them in Clojure. I also find the data-centric aspect of Clojure (excellent build-in structures, literal syntax for easily creating those structures, functions that act well on abstractions of those structures) good for data processing.

This fits a sweet spot between Ruby and Java.

Avatar of BandSquare
BandSquare uses ClojureClojure

We use Clojure mostly for its "Minority Report"-like interactive development in situations that require 'semi-automatic programming' (data inspection, admin tasks, API exploration, scrapers, etc.). We have also used Clojure successfully to build some components of our stack very quickly and reliably, in the backend and the frontend.

Avatar of papaver
papaver uses ClojureClojure

just started learning clojure, maybe around two weeks or so. i'm addicted. this is what i want to be working with and learning for the foreseeable future. the elegance of the language is refreshing. the community is really amazing. i've finally found a language that fits my passion for programming.

Avatar of CloudRepo
CloudRepo uses ClojureClojure

Clojure simplifies and reduces the coding efforts involved in creating CloudRepo. The fact that it runs in the JVM gives us access to all the libraries that we could ever need. Our code base is much smaller and easier to reason about than it would have been had we gone with pure Java.

Avatar of Climate CoLab
Climate CoLab uses Spring BootSpring Boot

Spring-Boot allows us to create stand-alone web servers and helps us configure many of our dependencies with sane default, while maintaining flexibility where we need it.

Avatar of Emcee
Emcee uses Spring BootSpring Boot

Probably the best application framework in Java, by far. Time-proven, mature.

Avatar of p009922
p009922 uses Spring BootSpring Boot

light weight server approach for REST-services

Avatar of Project44
Project44 uses Spring BootSpring Boot

All services are spring-boot applications.

Avatar of Vaadin
Vaadin uses Spring BootSpring Boot

Solid base for Java-based web app backend

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