Talentcrowd operates as a digital talent platform — providing employers with pipelines of highly vetted senior-level technology talent and on-demand engineering resources. We're tech agnostic and cost-competitive.

About Erlang

Erlang is a programming language designed for building highly concurrent and fault-tolerant systems. Developed at Ericsson's Computer Science Laboratory in the late 1980s, Erlang was initially created for telecommunications applications, where system reliability and real-time performance are critical. Over time, it has found applications beyond telecommunications, including web servers, messaging systems, and distributed and parallel computing.

Key Features of Erlang:

  1. Concurrency: Erlang was designed from the ground up to support concurrent and parallel programming. It uses lightweight processes (often called "actors") that are isolated from each other and communicate through message passing. This allows developers to create systems that can handle a large number of concurrent tasks efficiently.

  2. Fault Tolerance: Erlang is renowned for its fault-tolerant design. It has mechanisms for isolating and recovering from errors in individual processes without affecting the entire system. This is crucial in applications where high availability is required, such as telecommunications.

  3. Hot Code Upgrades: Erlang allows code upgrades to be performed while a system is running, often without any downtime. This is valuable in applications where continuous operation is essential.

  4. Soft Real-Time Capabilities: While not suited for hard real-time systems, Erlang is capable of soft real-time processing, making it suitable for applications with low-latency requirements.

  5. Pattern Matching: Erlang's pattern matching capabilities simplify the handling of complex data structures, making it easier to process and manipulate data.

  6. Immutable Data: Erlang uses immutable data structures, which simplifies concurrent programming and helps avoid many common programming errors.

  7. Garbage Collection: Erlang includes a garbage collector that manages memory automatically, reducing the risk of memory leaks.

  8. OTP (Open Telecom Platform): OTP is a set of libraries and design principles built on top of Erlang. It provides standardized frameworks and patterns for building distributed and fault-tolerant systems. OTP includes libraries for message passing, supervision trees, and more.

Use Cases for Erlang:

  1. Telecommunications: Erlang's origins are in telecommunications, and it is still widely used in this industry to build systems that handle massive call volumes and maintain high availability.

  2. Messaging Systems: Erlang's concurrency and fault-tolerance features make it an excellent choice for building messaging platforms, chat applications, and message brokers.

  3. Web Servers: Erlang is used in web servers like Cowboy and MochiWeb, where it can handle many simultaneous connections efficiently.

  4. Distributed Systems: Erlang's message-passing architecture and fault tolerance are well-suited for building distributed systems, such as database clusters and cloud services.

  5. IoT (Internet of Things): Erlang's lightweight processes and support for concurrent, event-driven programming make it suitable for IoT applications.

  6. Real-Time Systems: While not intended for hard real-time systems, Erlang can handle soft real-time requirements in applications like online gaming and financial trading.

Erlang's design philosophy prioritizes fault tolerance and concurrency, making it a valuable tool for building distributed and highly available systems, particularly in industries where system reliability is critical. It continues to be a popular choice for certain niches of software development.

Ask Question
Do You Have a Question?
We’re more than happy to help through our contact form on the Contact Us page, by phone at +1 (858) 203-1321 or via email at
Need Short Term Help?

Hire Talent for a Day

Already know what kind of work you're looking to do?
Access the right people at the right time.

Elite expertise, on demand