Bjarne Däcker

Bjarne Däcker

Former manager of the Computer Science Laboratory at Ericsson

Bjarne Däcker worked 36 years at Ericsson, first as programmer and systems designer and the last 18 years as manager of the Computer Science Laboratory. http://www.cs-lab.org/

Bjarne Däcker holds a licentiate of technology from the Royal Institute of Technology and an honorary doctorate from Linköping university.

He was chairman of the steering committee for the Swedish national program for Computer Science research for five years. Bjarne has also been Swedish representative on the committee for EU’s IT prize. He is a member of the Swedish Royal Academy of the Engineering Sciences.

As a pensioner, Bjarne Däcker has taken up university studies and has a B.A. in Archaeology.

Past Activities

Bjarne Däcker
Code Mesh LDN
07 Nov 2019
14.30 - 15.15

Concurrency before Erlang

This talk covers:

  • concurrent languages at Ericsson before Erlang,
  • imperative concurrent languages Modula, Chill and Ada (the last two large international efforts),
  • start of the Computer Science Lab at Ericsson and experimentation with language paradigms, and
  • the prototyping that led up to Erlang.



Applied research



A note on history - how complicated concurrency seemed to persons used to imperative sequential programming.


For people interested in the history of their profession.

Bjarne Däcker
Code BEAM STO 2019
16 May 2019
15.30 - 15.55

How Erlang got its name

Erlang was the third language designed at Ericsson with a structure of modules, processes and process communication in the tradition of Modula. Modula had been designed by Niklaus Wirth the inventor also of Pascal.

This talk will discuss the large scale international efforts in the 1980’s to create a standard systems programming language. That work led to Chill by the CCITT and to Ada by the DoD. It is surprising how many strange ways of process communication that were invented. All of those languages, however, were imperative yet Lisp and Prolog had been used for some successful applications at Ericsson.

The time was ripe to combine these efforts and the Computer Science Laboratory was set up to take the work further. The new programming language was nearly named EriLang. Erlang is the measure of traffic load well-known to everybody in the telecoms industry and was a much better choice.


Erlang was no skunk work.


People interested in Erlang, concurrent programming, functional programming, history of programming languages, applied research in industry.