Common Lisp vs Erlang: What are the differences?
Developers describe Common Lisp as "The modern, multi-paradigm, high-performance, compiled, ANSI-standardized descendant of the long-running family of Lisp programming languages". 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]. On the other hand, Erlang is detailed as "A programming language used to build massively scalable soft real-time systems with requirements on high availability". Some of Erlang's uses are in telecoms, banking, e-commerce, computer telephony and instant messaging. Erlang's runtime system has built-in support for concurrency, distribution and fault tolerance. OTP is set of Erlang libraries and design principles providing middle-ware to develop these systems.
Common Lisp and Erlang belong to "Languages" category of the tech stack.
"Flexibility" is the primary reason why developers consider Common Lisp over the competitors, whereas "Real time, distributed applications" was stated as the key factor in picking Erlang.
Erlang is an open source tool with 7.74K GitHub stars and 2.1K GitHub forks. Here's a link to Erlang's open source repository on GitHub.
AdRoll, Grooveshark, and Heroku are some of the popular companies that use Erlang, whereas Common Lisp is used by Real Softservice, NG Informática, and Platform Project. Erlang has a broader approval, being mentioned in 70 company stacks & 47 developers stacks; compared to Common Lisp, which is listed in 5 company stacks and 3 developer stacks.
What is Common Lisp?
What is Erlang?
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Postmates built a tool called Bazaar that helps onboard new partners and handles several routine tasks, like nightly emails to merchants alerting them about items that are out of stock.
Since they ran Bazaar across multiple instances, the team needed to avoid sending multiple emails to their partners by obtaining lock across multiple hosts. To solve their challenge, they created and open sourced ConsulMutEx, and an Elixir module for acquiring and releasing locks with Consul and other backends.
It works with Consul’s KV store, as well as other backends, including ets, Erlang’s in-memory database.
Another major decision was to adopt Elixir and Phoenix Framework - the DX (Developer eXperience) is pretty similar to what we know from RoR, but this tech is running on the top of rock-solid Erlang platform which is powering planet-scale telecom solutions for 20+ years. So we're getting pretty much the best from both worlds: minimum friction & smart conventions that eliminate the excessive boilerplate AND highly concurrent EVM (Erlang's Virtual Machine) that makes all the scalability problems vanish. The transition was very smooth - none of Ruby developers we had decided to leave because of Elixir. What is more, we kept recruiting Ruby developers w/o any requirement regarding Elixir proficiency & we still were able to educate them internally in almost no time. Obviously Elixir comes with some more tools in the stack: Credo , Hex , AppSignal (required to properly monitor BEAM apps).