Since lobste.rs is a very Elixir friendly community (I actually first heard of the language here) I thought I’d share my introductory post on the topic.
I’d appreciate any feedback, I always try to update blog posts with new info and fixes
They wanted a modern Ruby-like syntax with a well-tested process manager, the Erlang VM.
I find the use of the “modern” adjective these days so weird. Everything good is called “modern” these days. And it says nothing other interesting about something. Why is Ruby-like syntax modern? Ruby is from 1995, is that modern? A computer from 1995 wouldn’t be called that. In general, I think you could replace almost all usages of “modern” with “popular” and get a more accurate description.
On a related note: I know many people like Elixir because its syntax is like something they are used to (Ruby). But, and I am not the first person to say this, it’s a cryin' shame. Erlang syntax may look different but it is incredibly simple. There is very little syntax. You have comma, and period, and semi-colon, which take all of an hour or two to completely figure out where and how to use. When many people say “syntax matters”, they are saying that looking like something they are used to is what matters. And syntax does matter, but looking different may mean it’s actually much simpler to grok and that is a good thing.
With you on the syntax. While its a bit strange, I found learning it (back when Erlang 16 was in popular) a liberating experience.