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Programming Erlang

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  722 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Using Erlang, you’ll be surprised at how easy it becomes to deal with parallel problems, and how much faster and more efficiently your programs run. That’s because Erlang uses sets of parallel processes—not a single sequential process, as found in most programming languages.
Paperback, 2nd edition, 510 pages
Published October 16th 2013 by Pragmatic Bookshelf (first published July 11th 2007)
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Ettore Pasquini
May 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: technology
Perhaps the most challenging part of software engineering is striving to build something that is simple. Simplicity to me means something that you can fully grasp intuitively, ignoring the irrelevant. And then use it to enrich your language and build on top of it.

This is also the premise of OOP but for many reasons it’s easy to get bogged down with classes/methods that end up doing too much. My (novice) understanding of Erlang is that Erlang guides you more forcefully to a path that avoids cert
Jan 15, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A book with big cons and big pros. I think it will be easiest if I simply list the cons and the pros.

Let's start with the cons, all of which I attribute to editors asleep at the wheel or on crack:
1. The book is laid out in a reader-hostile manner: topics are introduced completely out-of-order. You'll be skipping around a lot to find in-depth answers for anything.
2. The index is worthless. You're rolling the dice when you try to find a particular topic. Chances are good it's not in the index.
Jan 08, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the definitive book on Erlang, written by Joe Armstrong, the creator of the Erlang language. The book is clearly written, with lots of small examples, and paced for the beginning Erlang programmer.

Erlang takes a little getting used to. It is a functional language, meaning that functions in general are unable to cause side-effects. For example, 'variables' are in one of 2 states: their initial state is 'unbound', their final state is 'has some value that can never change'. Attempting to p
Robert Postill
I really wanted to write a lovely review of this not just because it's a prag prog book but also because I like the values espoused by the Erlang community. I had hoped for a tour de force from the language's creator but instead I got a book I skimmed the last hundred pages of.

So what's wrong with it? Half a dozen things, but the crucial thing is that the focus of the book wanes as the book progresses. In the early chapters there's a real feeling of purpose, but by the end you almost feel despon
Austin Taylor
An adequate introduction to the language. Erlang is an important language, and it has enough unfamiliar elements to make it difficult to pick up without a guide. This book deserves credit for being a clear, approachable introduction to the syntax and core ideas of Erlang. However, he does not go as deep as I had hoped. His description of the language itself is thorough, but the chapters on OTP were relatively thin, and I am left with a number of questions about how to build and tune actual produ ...more
Oct 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a great book. As others have mentioned before, it is a bit chaotic at times, with understanding coming only after reading future chapters and with a few mistakes here and there, but this is made up for by the depth of the material and the positive energy of the author present on every page. If you can get through the tough parts, you'll be rewarded by a great explanation of how to build reliable systems based on immutable datastructures and message passing. ...more
Juan Caballero
May 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Erlang is an amazing programming language. This book is not the best if you're learning functional or parallel programming (you should know both paradigms before reading this book; also you should have programmed many funcionalities in Java, .NET or any other so complete language), but it's handy if you're learning Erlang or modular programming. It's easy to get stuck, so take your time reading it. ...more
Aug 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is an excellent book. I strongly advise anyone that wants to dive into Erlang to read this book. It is well-structured and covers the topics in an consise and joyful manner. I especially like how it keeps it real with references to real world cases. Personally, it makes me feel like I am taking a stroll down the rabbit hole into the wonders of the Erlang world.
Vimal Earnest
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book. The first book you should read if you are learning Erlang. The explanation is very clear without dumbing down the details. A classic book like K&R C, but for functional and concurrent programming.
Aug 11, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: coding
It was a while since I wrote my first post. The reason is that I'm reading books parallel and it takes time to finish one in 100%. Although I'm digging trough some interesting materials since October which surely deserve mentioning here, the book I want to write about today hijacked my time pritty well last month, making me read it from the cover to cover in no time.
So here it goes: another book from the Pragmatic Bookshelf - "Programming Erlang - Software for a Concurrent World" by Joe Armstron
Apr 27, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This seemed like a pretty good introduction to Erlang. I can't compare it to other Erlang books, as this is the first one I've read. I wish it was a little more concise and focused, and a bit more clear on where all the pieces fit together. For example, I'm not sure if I should try very hard to rely on OTP entirely for a distributed app, if I should use a library like lib_chan, or if should I stick directly to spawn, link and similar low-level functions.

Despite this qualm, I feel that I have a p
Chris Maguire
Aug 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
I've been programming with Erlang at work for 9 months already but the book has been a great back-filler and refresher. One key thing I'd forgotten is that generators in list comprehensions create Cartesian products: e.g.

> [{X, Y} || X <- [1,2,3], Y <- [a,b]].

Armstrong (predictably) has a very thorough grasp of Erlang (having designed it back in 1986) but also has a relaxed style; for example when explaining how to pa
Adam Schepis
Jun 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
excellent introduction to programming in Erlang. comprehensive, and well put together. Glosses over some of the details of how OTP apps are typically structured (but provides pointers to the right material.)

I would love to see this book updated to include some more modern day examples of where Erlang is being used and tools for building Erlang applications (like Rebar).
Didn't quite understand a large part of the examples in the book. But i get the general idea how powerful Erlang really is., will probably read the book once more while at the same time continue researching online and start up a full blown erlang project.

In my opinion that's the best way to truly learn a language.
Jul 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Its a great book to learn Erlang and to learn how to built fault tolerant distributed systems. Its easy to write distributed systems in Erlang because language supports it and take away all the complexity of writing similar concurrent systems in languages like Java/C++" – Himanshu N. ...more
Amiruddin Nagri
Jul 30, 2007 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: technical, book
Will read it sometime
this book is how to understand traffic formula
Matthew Campbell
Excellent into into Erlang, definitely the future of concurrent programming.
Oct 16, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
For experienced programmers, it's a gem of a language-learning book. Up the learning curve smoothly. ...more
May 01, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: technical
Nice book on Erlang language with some cool examples. I think these kinds of languages are the future of programming
Russ Olsen
Not a really well written book, but everyone's introduction to Erlang. ...more
Oct 13, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: programming, erlang
Very good introduction to Erlang, covers all the important basics. Written in an easy to follow way, with mostly interesting examples and some exercises for the reader.
Oleg Petrov
Feb 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great introduction to a beautiful language. Just the right size, involving informal style - plus comes from the language author imself!
Nov 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tech, favorites
Awesome book! Joe is a smart man and makes everything look easy. I liked the Sherlock case. Highly recommended book.
Łukasz Biedrycki
Dec 08, 2013 rated it liked it
It is good to look at the Erlang through the eyes of Joe (that was the main reason I read it).
Maybe it is good for beginners, but definitely not useful for practitioners.
Dave Peticolas
May 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent introduction to the intriguing programming language and distributed software framework Erlang. ...more
Alvaro Tejada Galindo
Love the book...want to learn Erlang? Read this book...full of nice examples this is a must read book!
Sep 26, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found the first quarter to half great and enthusiastic and inspiring to start with but the book got thinner and thinner as I wanted more concrete examples.
Harit Himanshu
Jun 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the first and best books I read this year. Introduces me to functional programming and concept of actor based concurrency, very useful and fun read
Piotr Kalinowski
Jun 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: computers
I liked the way books is organised. It touches on a broad range of subjects, providing solid foundation not only in syntax, but also Erlang way of doing things.
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