Blog Image for A new hope on the development sky?

Gleam: A Short Intro

A new hope on the development sky?

In the fast-evolving world of software development, new tools and frameworks emerge regularly, each promising to make our lives easier and our code cleaner. Among these, Gleam has recently caught the attention of developers, quickly gaining a reputation as a game-changer. So, what’s all the buzz about?

What is Gleam?

Gleam is a statically typed programming language that runs on the Erlang Virtual Machine (BEAM). Designed for building reliable and maintainable applications, it combines the robustness of static typing with the concurrency model of Erlang, making it an attractive option for developers looking for performance and reliability.

Why Gleam Stands Out

  1. Static Typing with Erlang’s Concurrency Model One of Gleam’s standout features is its static typing system. Unlike dynamic languages, static typing can catch errors at compile time, which can lead to more reliable code. Combining this with Erlang’s famed concurrency model means you get the best of both worlds: safe, efficient, and concurrent code.

  2. Interoperability with Erlang and Elixir Gleam is designed to interoperate seamlessly with Erlang and Elixir, allowing developers to leverage existing libraries and infrastructure. This makes it easier to adopt Gleam in existing projects and to integrate it with tools and libraries developers are already familiar with.

  3. Concise and Readable Syntax Gleam’s syntax is designed to be clean and readable, reducing the cognitive load on developers. This focus on simplicity not only speeds up development but also makes the code more maintainable in the long run.

  4. Powerful Tooling and Ecosystem From the get-go, Gleam has been equipped with powerful tooling. The language comes with a package manager, a formatter, and a type checker, all of which integrate smoothly into the development workflow. The growing ecosystem around Gleam is also a testament to its increasing popularity and utility.

How Does Gleam Compare to Other Languages?

When comparing Gleam to other languages like Rust, Go, or even Elixir, several key differences and advantages come to light:

Concurrency Model: While Go and Elixir also offer strong concurrency models, Gleam’s static typing provides a safety net that these languages’ dynamic types might not. Error Handling: Gleam’s type system allows for more robust error handling at compile time, which is a step up from what many dynamically typed languages offer. Interoperability: Gleam’s seamless interoperability with Erlang and Elixir makes it a compelling choice for teams already working within the BEAM ecosystem. Why Developers are Excited

  1. Enhanced Reliability With static typing, developers can catch more errors at compile time rather than at runtime, leading to more reliable and maintainable code. This reliability is crucial for building applications that require high uptime and robustness.

  2. Improved Developer Experience Gleam’s syntax and tooling are designed with the developer in mind, making the language not only powerful but also enjoyable to use. The focus on readability and simplicity can significantly reduce the time needed to onboard new developers.

  3. Future-Proofing Projects As the software landscape continues to evolve, having a language that can adapt and interoperate with other tools and frameworks is invaluable. Gleam’s ability to work alongside Erlang and Elixir means it’s well-positioned for future developments in the BEAM ecosystem.

Getting Started with Gleam

If you’re intrigued by Gleam and want to give it a try, here are some steps to get you started:

Install Gleam:

You can install Gleam by following the instructions on its official installation page.

Explore the Documentation:

The official documentation is a great resource to understand the language’s syntax, features, and best practices.

Join the Community:

Engage with the growing Gleam community through forums, GitHub, and social media. This will help you stay updated with the latest developments and get support from fellow developers.

Start a Project:

Try building a small project to get hands-on experience. Use the provided tools like the package manager and type checker to see how they can enhance your development workflow.

Final Thoughts

Gleam is making significant strides in the development world, offering a robust, reliable, and enjoyable programming experience. Its unique combination of static typing and Erlang’s concurrency model sets it apart from other languages, providing developers with a powerful tool for building high-performance applications. As more developers discover its potential, Gleam is poised to become a mainstay in the world of software development.

Whether you’re a seasoned developer or just starting, Gleam offers something valuable, making it worth exploring and integrating into your projects. So, why not give Gleam a try and see how it can illuminate your development journey?