Skip to content

Typesafe – Brief Note

Scala Lift Off

A new startup around the scala language launched today, Typesafe it’s called. James wrote up a nice piece. Here’s my brief not from chatting with them:

Scala has steadily risin as a new, parallel-friendly language in recent years and the creators of it are forming a company around it, Typesafe, funded by Greylock in the first round for $3M. (See the official press release for more details.) Scala and the various platforms around it are used primarily to enable high scale applications – things that need to process a lot of changes all at once: this ranges from financial applications analyzing various market scenarios to social applications like Twitter and Foursquare: from investment and risk decisions to updates on sandwiches and cats.

Overall there’s a positive, if only curious view about Scala from many developers. One developer I spoke with said simply, “Scala? Heard it’s good.” And this point I mean as a positive one.

On the business side, Typesafe is starting with the standard list of offerings: certified stacks, developer tools, training and certification, and consultative services. As with most open source companies now-a-days, you’d expect to see them offer products around the core stack: management, reporting, and other “support” products.

There’s another angle to consider on the business side. Companies like Cloudera seem to be monetizing open source under slightly different conditions than the past round of OSS money-makers. A Big Data sale is more about enabling the business to do something new (analyze more data, more fast, for example) which theoretically motivates non-development centric people to seek out a “product,” or “solution” to buy. Contrast this with, say, application server sales where you’re trying to motivate development teams to spend money on something or, at best, operations people who want certified stacks and management tools. If people like Typesafe and others in the cloud-big data-high-scale-changes-everything market can convince business buyers that they can buy IT that improves their business, there’s a slightly different market there than in the past. We’ll see.

Disclosure: Cloudera is a client, as is Lift.

Categories: Brief Notes, Programming.

Tags: ,