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I think you raised valid concerns about the single node performance of Erlang. If you have a single node problem or you are looking for raw speed Erlang is not the best option.

The fun fact is that most distributed systems don't really care about 7x slower too much. Those care about scalability, reliability and fault tolerance more. One of the most reliable software systems out there was written in Erlang and as far as I know, there are few system can match that sort of uptime[1]. There are few large scale systems in Erlang, including one Amazon AWS service[2], and bunch of others like WatsApp.

I also like to mention the VM that is pretty amazing. There is per process (not an OS process) garbage collection that enables Erlang to meet with super tight SLAs in terms of latency. Ideal for high scale websites, doing the routing, but also for moving data from A to B. The concurrency model is also one of the strongest features of Erlang. Message passing is very powerful and enables you writing asynchronous code that is still easy to read and follow. Go can match that probably with channels and go routines though.

If you care about single node performance you can either use NIFs[3] or if you not tied to Erlang chose a language that is focusing on that more.

1. http://ll2.ai.mit.edu/talks/armstrong.pdf 2. http://web.archive.org/web/20110623221347/http://www.satine.... 3. http://www.erlang.org/doc/tutorial/nif.html

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