Erlang by Mahesh Paolini-Su​bramanya


People get so caught up in the syntactical sugar of languages that they never actually grok the semantics, let alone the context and philosophy underlying the whole environment.  It doesn't really matter whether we're talking about something 'old' like Java/Python/Ruby, or 'new' like Dart/Go/F# - any discussion about the merits tends to boil down to either simplistic stuff
like "The syntax sucks! Hrrr!", or something"advanced" like "Garbage collection <redacted>".

In the case of Erlang - theres the bit about concurrency and scaling, and functional programming and actors and stuff, but what most people don't get is that it is really very simple

Erlang begins and ends with Fault Tolerance.

Fault Tolerance is - formally! - baked into the very genes of Erlang/OTP - something that ends up being amazingly useful when you are building any kind of system.  Remember, your clients (and co-workers!) will find new ways to break things, ways that you could never have imagined in your wildest dreams.

This, this is the reason to use Erlang. Once you get it, it completely changes the way you approach
development, and you will find yourself writing "erlang" in whatever language you happen to be using  (Mind you, writing tail-recursive code in java is a recipe for disaster, but thats another story…)

In this talk, I'll get into this buddha-nature of Erlang/OTP, pointing out how the various features of the language tie together into one seamless Fault Tolerant whole.  It'll probably run 45 minutes or so, not counting questions…

Mahesh Paolini-Subramanya is the V.P. of R&D at Ubiquiti Networks - a manufacturer of disruptive technology platforms for emerging markets. He has been involved in ‘Internet Stuff’ since Day Zero (remember Gopher?), and has spent the recent past building out Erlang-based massively concurrent Cloud Services and VoIP platforms.

He has the - dubious -honor of being involved in creating the first web/e-commerce system, the first Java based financial services platform, as well as the first Erlang-based cloud PBX, three products he may never live down.

He was previously the CTO of Vocalocity after its merger with Aptela (where he was a founder and CTO). Before that, he was V.P. of Development at Neoglyphics Inc, and CTO of Proxicom where he also led the Technology practice. He holds a B. Tech from the Indian Institute of Technology - Kanpur, and an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame.

 

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