[Newbies] Re: Machine gun the Balloon!
overcomer.man at gmail.com
Sat May 7 05:50:54 UTC 2016
Newbies, I learned by examining a Dictionary until I understood how it
works and that got me a job. I also got a little help from an old college
chum after I started a Smalltalk special interest group of the Portland PC
Club. Beyond that it was learning by doing, hiring an offshore consultant
for a special project to make a database using a Balanced Tree algorithm
(which oddly is not part of Squeak when that one data structure could
replace most of the rest of them. Then there was the occasional help by
Squeak experts on various things like how to turn off preferences or where
to find code to work with a camera. A big help has been focusing my
attention on writing a new computer language in Smalltalk which requires
lots of work that most programmers never do. But I still can't count
myself as an expert because I don't know lots of important things yet like
how to use FFI or how to write an FF or how to make Squeak work on a
Windows 98 computer which i have to use to run a CNC machine.
Experts, my OP was mainly to talk you into doing some real useful work on
Squeak instead of aggrandizing yourselves on work that is not truly useful
- you know replacing all the collections with a Balanced Tree might be nice
or making sharp examples of Secure Sockets or FFI that people can use or
get Squeak repaired so it can work on Win 98 or without Halos replacing
menus or how to make most of the programs one might download from CNet but
I guess it rings a bell with the real newbies that there isn't enough help
anywhere. To translate that, I as an intermediate programmer need to be
taught how to be senior programmer. So we need better mentoring for
On Fri, May 6, 2016 at 4:30 PM, Phil (list) <pbpublist at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Fri, 2016-05-06 at 13:23 -0700, Joseph Alotta wrote:
> > I am a beginner with Squeak and the problem I am facing is not
> > knowing how to go about using the tools available.
> Having gone through this myself not too many years ago, yet before
> things really started to get crazy (in good and bad ways) in the Squeak
> world, I appreciate what you're saying. Squeak and its dialects can
> seem pretty impenetrable until you learn 'the basics' which
> unfortunately are a bit of a moving target (esp. re: the tools and UI)
> depending on what you're trying to learn/do.
> > There is a lot of language information, but not a “here’s what we do”
> > best practices for developers. I don’t mean coding, but I mean, how
> > to find the resource I need. How to build your project in pieces
> > that you can test, etc.
> This is where things probably get pretty tough once you get beyond the
> absolute basics. In its effort to get better, things are constantly
> being broken in ways that are often no big deal once you get over the
> hump and learn your way around. However, they're changing enough to
> 'break' a lot of the existing tutorials and they're changing often
> enough that said tutorials don't seem to be getting updated to reflect
> the changes in later releases. As if this weren't enough, there are
> factions with different views on overall direction which directly
> impacts things like best practices and is why we have different
> 'distros' ala Squeak/Pharo/Cuis/etc.
> > What I was looking for is an Apprentice kind of relationship, but
> > nobody seems interested or nearby.
> That's probably going to be difficult as Smalltalk has a very small
> population of programmers vs. other languages. So getting someone with
> experience to spend 1-on-1 time with is going to be difficult and/or
> expensive. Your best bet to get started is to read the mailing lists
> (I would recommend this list, squeak-dev, and cuis as they are all good
> places to ask basic questions) and just ask when you get stuck. There
> are a few good written works you can use as a starting point (you might
> want to check out something from http://wiki.squeak.org/squeak/792) and
> there are several people who have put together some good intro material
> on YouTube (For example Lawson English https://www.youtube.com/playlist
> ?list=PL6601A198DF14788D and the late James Robertson https://www.youtu
> be.com/playlist?list=PL61A023880D3529DB have put together some basic
> stuff that should be helpful)
> Something I'd highly recommend: if you find a tutorial you like, find
> out what version of whatever dialect they based the tutorial on and try
> to use that *exact* version (or at least get as close as you can: if
> something was written with Squeak 3.x in mind, don't use Squeak 4.x to
> try to follow along etc.) This will minimize the pain of trying to
> mentally map the tutorial to a different VM/image with even a slightly
> different feature set and UI. When you're just getting started, that's
> not the time you want to be worried about using the bleeding edge VM or
> image. If you can't figure out what version to use, post details and
> ask on the lists as either someone who used it or possibly even the
> person who created it might be reading.
> > Sincerely,
> > Joe.
> Hope this helps,
> > > On May 6, 2016, at 1:35 PM, Kirk Fraser [via Smalltalk] <[hidden
> > email]> wrote:
> > >
> > > Byte magazine which published the balloon concept for Smalltalk
> > rising above the ivory tower of a lighthouse guiding the way in a sea
> > of computer languages is out of business. I think it is time for the
> > Squeak balloon to be grounded to connect with the reality of why
> > computer languages exist - to make things easy for application
> > developers. So I propose all Squeak developers stop "improving"
> > Squeak for one year and spend the time writing useful applications in
> > Squeak. That could lead to a basket of new ideas for next year.
> > Maybe make this a regularly scheduled event - a half year for
> > applications and a half year for Squeak?
> > >
> > > The reason motivating this suggestion is on the advice of a Squeak-
> > Dev member, I downloaded the latest all in one and to my chagrin, I
> > found an improvement that made Squeak as worthless as a balloon full
> > of machine gun holes. The Workspace window gets halos with a right
> > mouse click on a standard 2 button laptop mouse. So I'll return to
> > an older Squeak for now.
> > >
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