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Discussion on: Go from zero to clojure in 60 seconds

aminmansuri profile image
hidden_dude • Edited

For any language to take over the world it must have a killer app.

For example, Java became popular because Servlets / JSP were far superior over ISAPI filters (and it was marketed as the language for the Web).

C became big because of Unix and later Windows (both Win16 and Win32) which dominated young programmer's minds in the early 90s. C++ later became popular because of Win32 and MFC.

Ruby became popular because of Rails and the promise that web application development could be heavily simplified.

SQL became popular because of the rise of relational databases.

Objective-C became popular because of the iPhone (Swift because they wanted an alternative to Objective-C).

Javascript gained its dominating position after Google demonstrated GMail: a very versatile client based web app that was actually great to use. Thus the "AJAX" revolution in Javascript and the subsequent long list of libraries to support better and richer client side JS.

So if Clojure is going to take over the world, what is its "killer app"?
What great proof of concept is going to make us bother to move over?

Theoretical benefits rarely matter. Otherwise we'd all be programming in Scheme, Haskell, or Smalltalk.

jreighley profile image

Clojure is adopted by the big corporations because it's immutability makes it trivial to scale into multi-threading, multi-processors and big data across cloud instances. It is used way more than people think. You talk to some Clojurists from big companies, and they have 100 or so Clojure developers out of a java ecosphere with thousands.. They don't talk about it much, but that doesn't make it at all insignificant.

Clojure is adopted by start-ups and such because it's repl driven development makes getting from idea to prototype very fast and easy. It's dynamic typing allows you to go straight into solving business problems without building a ton of data structure objects in advance.

Clojure also tends to come out on top on nearly all bug studies. Breaking changes are rare.

Those are the killer ideas propelling Clojure. It probably will never take over the world, but those who use it love it, and do pretty well for themselves by and large. It has a solid enough footprint that it isn't going away anytime soon.