Building Web Applications with Erlang

Monday, 20th August, 2012

Building Web Applications with Erlang: Working with REST and Web Sockets on Yaws
By Zachary Kessin

This is a lovely little book. 133 pages long, it’s slim, readable, modest, concrete and to the point. It doesn’t insist on being comprehensive for the sake of filling shelf inches. The author has a simple story to tell, and he tells it simply.

The book introduces the erlang web server Yaws, and covers the Yaws approach to serving dynamic content, templating (with ErlyDTL), streaming, ReST, WebSockets, and so on.

The book is light enough to be worth reading if you’re mildly interested in Yaws, or in erlang for web development, and it’s concrete enough to have one or two exciting new ideas (at least it did for me).

It’s also just a nice read. I’d like to see a lot more computer books like this one.

Unfortunately, the text is marred by O’Reilly’s usual incompetent or negligent editing, littered with typos, language errors and code inconsistencies.

Putting that aside, especially nice for me were the chapter on file upload, showing how the web application can start processing a file even before the file has been fully uploaded, and the appendix on emacs, with its brief introduction to Distel.

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One Response to “Building Web Applications with Erlang”


  1. […] The book introduces the erlang web server Yaws, and covers the Yaws approach to serving dynamic content, templating (with ErlyDTL), streaming, ReST, WebSockets, and so on. The book is light enough to be worth reading …  […]


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