I have been look at scala and lift (web framework built on scala), on and off about a year now. I have revisited it again for the past few weeks. Scala as a language seems to be promising. For me it adds something new to the main stream languages today, like pattern matching (not regexp), functional programming, actors library. There are some languages that have these properties but I think scala has got some transitional properties giving some balance. Using scala you get to access java libraries natively, despite its terse syntax it is still a static language, this would mean tool developers will have an easier.
I have also been re-using emacs again. Some interesting scala emacs some stuff.
Scala emacs tools