Episode 19

EMx 019: Brooklyn Zelenka: Elixir I assume Witchcraft, Exceptional, and so on?


September 18th, 2018

1 hr 38 secs

Your Hosts
Special Guest

About this Episode


  • Charles Max Wood
  • Mark Ericksen
  • Josh Adams
  • Eric Berry

Special Guest: Brooklyn Zelenka

In this episode of Elixir Mix, the panel talks to Brooklyn Zelenka who lives in Vancouver, Canada. Listen to the panel and the guest talk about various topics, such as: different Elixir libraries, Quark, Witchcraft, Exceptional, ConsenSys, Meetup, among others.

Show Topics:

1:33 – Let’s talk about Exceptional for that library?

1:40 – Brooklyn: Sure, it helps with flow.

3:33 – You are making Exceptional more accessible?

3:35 – Brooklyn: Yes, more conceptual.

3:49 – Panelist: What’s the adaptation like?

4:09 – Brooklyn: People seem to like it.

4:33 – Panelist: What were you doing before that?

4:42 – Brooklyn: First language was JavaScript. There is a huge Ruby community. Tons of Ruby refugees looking for help.

5:27 – There seems to be a large migration from Ruby to Elixir. Have you played with Ruby at all?

5:40 – Brooklyn: Yes, I have used Ruby for a couple of years. There is such an interest in Elixir from the Ruby community. They are such different languages. The aesthetic is similar, and the way the languages are set-up is completely different.

6:41 – Panelist: So not having three or four different alien methods? I have been developing Elixr for a while now, but Ruby doesn’t solve modern-day problems. The fact that you have been working with Elixir since 2014 is amazing.

7:24 – Brooklyn: The first library I wrote was Quark. Then that led into Witchcraft.

10:49 – Panelist adds in his comments.

11:06 – Brooklyn: There are a lot of different things I would love to see in the libraries. At what point do we say that this is the default style in Elixir? My keynote was exactly about this at a conference this year. Elixir hits a nice spot in the program place. It’s very accessible. I’ve brought into these concepts because of Elixir.

12:37 – Let’s talk Exceptions. Will it become apart of core?

13:14 – Brooklyn: I wouldn’t mind that it would become apart of core.

15:10 – Any other questions around Exceptional or Exception or other libraries?

15:25 – Panelist: Let’s change topics.

15:30 – Brooklyn has her own company now.

15:52 – Panelist: Good job on Roberts Overload!

16:00 – Panelist: Where does block chain and Elixir meet?

16:08 – Brooklyn answers this question.

17:16 – Brooklyn: Not all block chains are...

19:02 – Brooklyn: Another good fit would be...

19:33 – Panelist: My company is apart of ConsenSys. I hear a lot about the block chain and others. How can Elixir help the block chain? (20:15) You mentioned earlier that Elixir could solve a lot of the issues that bock chain is having. Can you elaborate on this?

20:21 – Brooklyn answers this question – here – check it out!

21:21 – Brooklyn: By bringing in these concepts...

22:16 – Brooklyn makes a huge podcast announcement!! Breaking News!

22:37 – What does that mean – messages on a...

24:06 – Advertisement – Digital Ocean!

24:43 – The mail messages contents does that sit on the ledger or...

25:01 – Brooklyn talks about this topic in detail.

26:00 – Brooklyn: There is a distribution of control. I am going to have to run a program to check when a message comes in – I would like that to be hooked up to my UI, ideally.

26:35 – Panelist: You are a fascinating person!

26:45 – Chuck: You also do Elixir training for people?

26:56 – Yes! We help companies and go to conferences. This is for zero experience with Elixir. Over the course of a couple of days to give people confidence production in Elixir. It won’t give you all of the knowledge, but it helps. This also gives people access to me, and my business partner, to use us for questions and so on.

28:56 – You live in Vancouver. What is the Elixir community – through Meetup – what is the temperature like there for Elixir or Ruby, etc.? What are the trends looking like?

29:31 – Brooklyn: Yes, check us out at Meetup.

35:18 – Panelist: I think that is interesting on your opinions on GO with your background.

35:35 – Brooklyn continues her ideas on this topic. It’s not to say that GO is the worse language ever, but from what I have seen that it’s a nice experience in Elixir that things work. All the libraries integrate nicely. There is a style and flavor that is friendly. You get the friendliness with all of this power. You can scale up very nicely from a single node.

37:47 – Where can Elixir “should” go and could go?

38:21 – Brooklyn answers this question and others.

39:21 – Dialyxir / Elixir.

41:27 – Dialyxir overall is pretty nice and it gets the job done with what Elixir needs it to do. Type system.

42:09 – The pre-existing eco-system isn’t built for it. You don’t know if it’s safe to run? There is no way to know about this. The overhead for the programmer tends to be really high. Why don’t we add things like – adding property checks – to ensure that you know how this thing will behave when it run. Using some other techniques – not just in tests – but integrate it into the core workflow. This is really important

44:22 – Advertisement!

45:03 – Panelist chimes in.

45:21 – Brooklyn: Have you seen Alpaca? I am sure it’s 1.0 now. It runs on the beam.

46:15 – Panelist adds comments.

46:25 – Brooklyn: This is why I brought up RChain earlier in the conversation.

47:01 – Block Chain.

48:17 – Panelist talks.

48:53 – Brooklyn: At the application level – one of my projects is having a language that will run...

51:17 – Chuck: I am still learning Elixir. So this is way beyond from where I am at. Let’s do some picks!






  • Workspace Environment: Kaizen – Change for the Better = Improvement.




  • Wabi-Sabi – seeing the beauty in things that imperfect.