Friday, September 26, 2008

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Exciting News for Dolphin Smalltalk Users

Through a cooperation between ObjectArts and Lesser Software the next generation Dolphin Smalltalk generation will increase speed, support multi-threading, Unicode, SLL's, ...

Read more here.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Pier 1.0.17

Tudor Girba announced the new version 1.0.17 of the Pier CMS system today. Pier is built on top of Squeak and Seaside, and thus it runs on all major operating systems. You can download the release from:

Monday, September 22, 2008

Friday, September 12, 2008

SqueakSVN - Squeak and Subversion

The Software Architecture Group from the HPI in Potsdam announced a Subversion integration project called SqueakSVN for Squeak Smalltalk.

The project site provides more information, a demo video and the source.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Squeak on the iPhone

John M. McIntosh and Michael Rueger announced the availability of iSqueak - a squeak virtual machine port for the iPhone/Touch.

They won the 3rd price (together with Grit Schuster) on his years ESUG Innovation award (read the ESUG paper here).

Visit the project site and the announcement for more information. According to SqueakNews John is also wants to offer support.

James Robertson made a video available through Youtube:

Glassfish server adapter part 2

The glassfish server adapter for Eclipse (see my last post on this) now has the (so far missing feature) to set the domain dir. It's available in version 1.0.8. Thanks Mr. Raccah

Monday, September 08, 2008

September Smalltalk in Munich

Today we have our next Smalltalk meeting here in munich. We start 7pm in the VSA building, Englschalkinger Straße 150 (subway station Arabellapark).

VSA is building health care systems using VisualAge Smalltalk. There will also be a presentation from Joachim Tuchel on VisualAge. I met him coincidentally this morning at the central railway station.

The event is open so feel free to come by if you are interested in Smalltalk. Thanks to Steffen Müller for all the coordination work.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Boot Smalltalk

There is some more info on the web on Squeak Smalltalk booting on the OLPC with the SqueakNOS (No operating system) project:
  • Gerardo provided a VMWare image to boot squeak and has some tips how to prepare any Squeak smalltalk image to work without an operating system (you can download the VMWare applicance from here)
  • James made a video from ESUG 2008 available:


I reported earlier on a port of Mondrian to Squeak Smalltalk allowing you to visualize and analyze your object oriented system.
Maybe you also know the CodeCrawler tool from VisualWorks.

Meanwhile there is a new tool available called "CodeCity" presented at ESUG 2008. It visualizes the code in 3D which is very cool. It's written in Cincom Smalltalk. A paper is available here and the projects page here.

James' blog also has some infos and a nice video. Thanks for making this available!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Google Chrome, JavaScript and Smalltalk

The secret is out since yesterday: Google has released Google Chrome - a new webbrowser. It's easy to install - and from a first impression also very fast. But that's not the exciting news - at least not for us Smalltalkers.

The most interesting part is a new implementation for the JavaScript Engine called "V8" done by members of the orginal Animorphic team. Animorphic Smalltalk was a Smalltalk system built around the mid-90s as part of a startup that was informally known as Animorphic Systems. In early 1997, Animorphic was acquired by Sun, and much of the underlying VM technology was put to real use in the Java Hotspot VM.

Animorphic Smalltalk included a high performance VM, a blue-book compatible library, novel browsers and flyweight glyph-based GUI framework, optional type system, mirror based reflection and mixins. It was later released into Open Source.

Lars Bak is now responsible for V8 at Google (he was technical lead for Strongtalk Smalltalk VM and the Java HotSpot VM. I already posted about his early work on OOVM and expected something like this - especially after I havent heard anything from him since 2004 after Esmertec acquired OOVM.

Another interesting aspect of the V8 virtual machine is that it's open source. Just use

svn checkout v8-read-only"

to checkout the project (13,6 MB). It is mainly written in C++, based on the Strongtalk Smalltalk code and released with a BSD/MIT license. It uses some neat design tricks like dynamically created hidden classes (as you can read on the Design doc page)

Dave Griswold has posted some more information on the Strongtalk list and on the Squeak list.

While Daren is trying to run first benchmarks I gave Dan's lively kernel a try. Lively Kernel is desktop kernel written in JavaScript by Dan Ingalls (of Smalltalk fame) while working at Sun. Right jump into the kernel page with the chrome browser. It's really fast compared to JavaScript engines I tried before.

So JavaScript is hotting up and more interesting work is in the pipe. Maybe you remember Ian's work on open extensible object systems at Viewpoint research institute. With just 400 lines of code and no serious attempt on optimization he was able to implement a JavaScript version that was faster than WebKit/Safari and Firefox...

Regarding performance and running Smalltalk David Griswold explains:
"I'm sure that these sorts of things can be worked around, but they do mean
that V8 will never in its pure form quite reach the pinnacle of theoretical
performance possible for a VM targeted specifically to Smalltalk etc. So it
won't be as fast as Strongtalk, although it may get fairly close to
VisualWorks performance.

"Remember it will still be a lot easier to run other dynamic languages on JavaScript than it is to run them on Java, since at least JavaScript is fully dynamic, unlike

"The release of the V8 VM is the beginning of a whole new era for
dynamic languages (Smalltalk, Ruby, Python, etc).

Let the flood of fast new dynamic language implementations begin!

I'm eager what the answer of Microsoft will be (especially since my friend David Simmons (Smallscript/S#) is working on scripting languages there) and if .NET and Suns JVM will be more friendly to dynamic languages in the future. Interesting times ...