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Erlang Programming Paperback – June 29, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-0596518189 ISBN-10: 0596518188 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 498 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (June 29, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596518188
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596518189
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #205,101 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Book Description

A Concurrent Approach to Software Development

About the Author


Francesco Cesarini has used Erlang on a daily basis for over 15 years, having started his career as an intern at Ericsson's computer science laboratory, the birthplace of Erlang. He moved on to Ericsson's Erlang training and consulting arm working on the first release of the OTP middleware, applying it to turnkey solutions and flagship telecom applications.

In 1999, soon after Erlang was released as open source, he founded Erlang Solutions. With offices in the UK, Sweden, Poland (and soon the US), they have become the world leaders in Erlang based consulting, contracting, training, systems development, support services and conferences. At Erlang Solutions, Francesco has worked on major Erlang based projects both within and outside Ericsson, and in his current role as Technical Director, is setting the strategy and vision of the company while supervising the technical teams.

Francesco is active in the Erlang community not only through regularly talks, seminars and tutorials at conferences worldwide, but also through his involvement in international research projects. With whatever time he has left over, he teaches Erlang to graduates and undergraduates at Oxford University and the IT University of Gothenburg. You can follow his ramblings (mainly on Erlang and Erlang Solutions) on twitter.

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Customer Reviews

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A little reading time opened up, so I grabbed this book.
wiredweird
Programming Erlang is both an excellent introduction to the Erlang language and OTP platform, and a great book on programming generally.
T. Peter Herndon
This is where Erlang really shines and they describe it clearly and concisely.
Alan McKean

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
What is most attractive about the Erlang programming language is that from the beginning it was designed to solve real and difficult problems, and to do it in an elegant and powerful way. It is also a small language, which makes writing tools for it much more practical than for larger language such as Java or C++.

This book is written for experienced programmers, but not necessarily those that have any prior exposure to Erlang or even functional programming languages in general. The book consists of two parts. The first should be read sequentially, like a textbook. The second part, however, can be read in any order as you need the informaton. The following is a listing of the chapters and a brief description of what you'll find in each.

The first part of the book consists of the first eleven chapters, and describes the core parts of the Erlang language.

1. Introduction - Gives a high-level overview of the characteristics and features that have made Erlang so successful, provides insight into the context in which the language was designed, and describes how this influenced its current shape. Case studies show how Erlang is actually used, comparing it with other languages and highlighting its strengths.

2. Erlang Basics - Covers the basics of Erlang. Some of this will be elementary for experienced programmers, and some will not, such as the fact that you can assign to each variable only once. The chapter starts with defining the basic Erlang data types, and concludes by showing how to define Erlang functions and place them into modules to create programs.

3. Sequential Erlang - An important topic here is recursion, which is perhaps the most useful and powerful of all techniques usually found in a functional language.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Alan McKean on July 2, 2009
Format: Paperback
What a great book! I have been gobbling up everything that I can related to Erlang in the last several months (forums, books by Joe Armstrong (4 stars), Martin Logan (4 stars) and now, the best of all ... Francesco and Simon's 'Erlang Programming'. It presents a broad view of much that Erlang has to offer in a way that is very accessible to newcomers. They systematically present what you need to get started in the first three chapters, then explain the concurrency model and the three process design patterns in the next two chapters. The next few chapters of the book dive into the details of various features of the language: records, specialized data types, persistence options. Then you are ready for OTP: the Open Telecom Platform. This is where Erlang really shines and they describe it clearly and concisely. The latter chapters cover various language libraries and features: sockets, the Mnesia database, interfacing with C and Java (elegant!), and the finer points of debugging, tracing, testing, documenting and deploying your application.

By all means, get all three books: 'Programming Erlang' (Pragmatic) by Joe Armstrong, 'Erlang and OTP in Action' (Manning) by Martin Logan et. al., and this book by Francesco and Simon. But if you choose to buy only one, I do not hesitate to recommend this one. But do yourself a favor and get all three. Each one offers a different perspective.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Lynton Grice on September 2, 2009
Format: Paperback
Having already read the very good Erlang book by Joe Armstrong entitled "Programming Erlang: Software for a Concurrent World", I was very excited to get this new Erlang book the moment it became available.

I am fairly new to Erlang and unfortunately do not use it in my daily job (SAP technical consultant by day) so I can only give a "beginners viewpoint". Not taking anything away from Joe Armstrongs book at all...it is also superb, but from a beginners point of view I have found that "Erlang Programming" is an easier read and I'm doing more "oh, is that how it works" now ;-) I especially enjoy the little diagrams scattered around the book to help illustrate how the processes communicate etc.

The chapters I have found most useful to me are:

- Process Design Patterns (I enjoyed reading on the "Finite State Machine etc")
- Process Error Handling
- Distributed Programming in Erlang

Overall I am VERY impressed with this book and would happily recommend it to anyone like me who is trying to get up to speed with Erlang very quickly.

BTW: The 2 books combined definetly compliment each other very nicely!

Thankyou Simon and Francesco for an OUTSTANDING book!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By syaramak on August 18, 2010
Format: Paperback
I'm a newbie to the Erlang world and I'm glad I picked this book.

The authors have done a good job of motivating the reader in the first couple of chapters.

These are followed by a few more that lay out the foundations of the language in a crisp and concise manner.

The next set of chapters on processes and their design patterns are informative and interesting.

The last chapters concentrate on describing the libraries provided by the OTP platform including one on the battle-tested Mnesia database.

Overall, I'd say it's a well organized and easy read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mirko Bonadei on May 24, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've started study Erlang after 4 years of Java and Object Oriented Programming. I choose Erlang because of its great features that day by day are matching the real world needs, and I think it could be a great investment on my career.
Erlang is different, and without a good source of information about, it could be very hard to understand; this is why I choose "Erlang Programming". In fact this book is born from 2 persons that well know the argument, and are familiar with its explanation.
Francesco Cesarini uses it from about 1994 when he was studying at Uppsala University, and he is the founder of the leading company about Erlang in the world today and most of all, he is very very active in the Erlang Community.
Simon Thompson is a professor at Kent University and he has taught Logic and Computation for about twenty years, writing some other books, and leading his team in the developement of Wrangler, a refactoring tool for Erlang.
Erlang Programming will guide you in every Erlang aspects, giving you some good advices on how to design systems in the right way so that you will be able to use Erlang's key features to get the best from them.
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