Home Ceylon: A New Enterprise Development Language From Red Hat Developer Gavin King

Ceylon: A New Enterprise Development Language From Red Hat Developer Gavin King

Ceylon is a new enterprise development language being developed by Red Hat employee Gavin King. The team plans to release a compiler later this year. King detailed the project at QCon Beijing 2011, and slides from his presentation were published earlier this month. When finished, it will run on the Java Virtual Machine and feature static typing, automatic memory management and other features missing from Java. According to King’s presentation, the Ceylon team will strive to make the new language “easy to learn and understand.”

It’s currently in a very early stage. In a blog post, King writes, “All we have right now is a specification, an ANTLR grammar, and an incomplete type checker.” Regarding whether it’s a “Java killer,” King wrote, “Ceylon isn’t Java, it’s a new language that’s deeply influenced by Java, designed by people who are unapologetic fans of Java. Java’s not dying anytime soon, so nothing’s killing it.”

Introducing the Ceylon Project – Gavin King presentation at QCon Beijing 2011

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The Ceylon Type System – Gavin King presentation at QCon Beijing 2011

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There are several code examples in the first deck.

“Ceylon will vie with JVM languages such as JRuby, Scala, and Jython as a new choice for developers,” writes Paul Krill in InfoWorld. We touched on the ways new languages that depend on the JVM are complementing Java in our article “Java’s Not Dying, It’s Mutating.”

In the comments on his blog, King explains why he doesn’t just use Scala instead. “Personally, I find that Scala’s type system is simply more complex than I want or need, with several features I think actually harm understandability/readability, and I find its syntax a bit of a dog’s breakfast,” he writes. “But look, that’s just a very personal view, and I simply don’t want to get into criticizing Scala or arguing back and forth about specific language features. Ceylon is a quite different language and stands or falls on its own.”

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