Updated March 23, 2023
Difference Between Clojure and Scala
The modern, dynamic language on the Java platform, Clojure was developed by Rich Hickey in 2007. Clojure vs Scala thus in this, the issues of Clojure can be filed in the Clojure JIRA project page and it is driven by a community. The language was developed for concurrency. The concept of identities with immutable states overtime is followed in Clojure. The general-purpose programming language, Scala was first developed by Martin Odersky in January 2004. We can operate Scala along with Java. Scala translates into Java byte code and uses Java Virtual Machine. The name is derived from scalable and it can grow with the demand of users.
Head to Head Comparison Between Clojure and Scala
Below are the Top 32 difference between Clojure vs Scala:
Key Differences Between Clojure and Scala
Let’s discuss some of the major key differences between Clojure vs Scala:
- Clojure is a dynamic programming language whereas Scala is a combination of functional and object-oriented programming.
- Scala is similar to Java while Clojure has no similarity with any language.
- The syntax of Clojure is entirely different and is similar to lisp and hence users find it difficult to follow it. Scala syntax is familiar to many due to Java coding and hence people take up Scala over Clojure.
- Big projects can be easily handled in Scala whereas, in Clojure, it is not easy to maintain big and critical projects.
- For a new learner, the Clojure code looks the same everywhere in the program but it is easy to differentiate between lines in Scala.
- Since Clojure is dynamically typed, it is difficult to maintain large codebase. But Scala is statically typed and hence it is easy to maintain large codebase.
- The error messages appear directly as stack error traces in Clojure. In Scala, the error message directly points out to change the syntax or other errors.
- Clojure has no specific environments and relies on text editors such as Emacs whereas Scala has environment support from eclipse and others that support Java.
- Hotkeys are needed to manipulate Clojure and are not that easy to learn for users who have no idea about lisp. Hotkeys are not needed in Scala.
- It is pretty difficult to optimize the byte code in Clojure and hence the performance of Scala is better in terms of byte code.
- The language constructs of Clojure performs very well when compared with Scala due to transactional memory and persistent data structures.
- A lazy sequence is implemented in Clojure while in Scala it is not implemented.
- Clojure’s numeric literals are compiled with and without boundary checking while Scala’s numeric compilation is not complicated like this.
- The data structures are immutable by default in Clojure. In Scala, the data structures are mutable.
Comparison Table Clojure vs Scala
Let’s discuss the top most comparison between Clojure vs Scala:
|Clojure is an up-gradation of lisp.
|Scala follows static typing.
|The compilation is faster.
|The compilation is slow.
|Clojure is not easy to learn.
|Scala is easy for people who know Java.
|Clojure is not marketed to the users.
|Scala has great marketing and is marketed with Java enterprise.
|The syntax is simple and consistent.
|The syntax is not simple and does not follow consistency.
|Clojure is easy to understand with logic.
|Scala is complicated.
|Clojure uses many parentheses which makes it look difficult.
|Scala has limited usage of parentheses and users find it easy.
|Documentation is less as it is a comparatively new language.
|Scala has better documentation since it is developed before Clojure.
|The code is developed with a limited number of words.
|The usage of words and vocabulary is vast in Scala.
|Clojure is not easily a readable language.
|Scala is more readable when compared with Clojure.
|An editor is needed in the Clojure language.
|An editor is not at all necessary in the Scala language.
|Byte codes are not that efficient as they seem.
|Efficient byte codes for low codes can be used.
|Clojure takes some time to compile as compilation happens only when full code is loaded.
|No time lag during compilation in Scala as the code is compiled line by line.
|Clojure is slow.
|Scala is faster than Clojure.
|The microservice development is efficient.
|The microservice development is not efficient.
|The concurrency is not good in Clojure. But it offers a concurrency library core.async.
|Scala offers a concurrency library called Akka.
|The code is thread-safe.
|The code is not thread-safe.
|The concurrency support is from Go lang.
|The concurrency support is inspired by Erlang.
|The functionality is more in Clojure.
|The functionality is not in Scala.
|The concurrency libraries are more flexible and reactive.
|The concurrency libraries are not flexible and reactive.
|The running code can be modified.
|The running code cannot be modified.
|The codes are not reused.
|Codes can be reused.
|The storage of the library is not easy.
|The libraries do not hold much memory as it is lightweight.
|Polymorphism is supported without the usage of classes.
|Classes are needed for polymorphism.
|No Apache/Spark support and hence machine learning is tough in Clojure.
|Scala has Apache/Spark support and we can do machine learning as well.
|iPhones are offered support by manufacturers for a lifetime.
|iPhones are offered support by manufacturers for a lifetime.
|There is only one code style and hence the user is not confused.
|There are many code styles that make the user confused.
|Any user can add Clojure patches in the community and after approval of Rich, it will be implemented.
|It is not easy to add Scala patches by any user through the community.
|The data structure is implemented using macros.
|Macros are not needed for data structure implementation.
|The language is not generalized much. It is simple and easy.
|The language is more generalized.
|The code is used as another face of lisp and the macro system is powerful.
|Scala is more of a scripting language and the syntax is concise.
|Pattern matching is not good in Clojure and data structures are persistent.
|The pattern is matched well in Scala and the data structures are not persistent.
Both Clojure and Scala are an open-source programming language with Scala being more popular and used by many. A data structure is used in both languages. Scala can be used as a better Java and people opt Scala for Java. Both languages run using Java Virtual Machine and with the same byte code, the same performance is achieved.
This is a guide to Clojure vs Scala. Here we discuss the key differences with infographics and comparison table. You can also go through our other suggested articles to learn more –