[Seaside] rails niceties equivalents?

Torsten Bergmann astares at gmx.de
Fri May 15 08:29:44 UTC 2009

Since this question comes up from time to time I would answer it like this:

Seaside is not comparable to Rails. Seaside is a web framework - and
does a very good job in web development compared to others out there.

Rails on the other hand allows you to quickly start a simple web
app right from the database. Depending on your requirements this
allows you to provide a simple (CRUD) web application within minutes - 
but as the web pages grow or requirements change you may be limited 
with the possibilities of the framework (and maybe the language too). 
Decision there are already made. It's like using a wizard in an IDE,
you can start easily - but there is a point in time where you
need control and knowledge back in your hands ;)

So the Smalltalk world is more comparable to the J2EE world here.
YOU have to make decisions depending on your need and choose the 
things that make up your application.

In Java you have to make decisions for the web tier (JSF, JSP, Facelets,
plain Servlets, ...) and persistence (simple JDBC, OR-Mapping using JPA 
with Hibernate, TopLink, ...), build system (Ant vs. Maven) etc.

Smalltalk is not different here.
I assume you already made the decision in Smalltalk for Seaside as
the web thing to use. You can start developing your model, connect
it to a Seaside UI and first use simple "in image" persistence.
This allows you to quickly provide a first prototype of an app.

Later you may bind your app to Gemstone or Magma persistence (both OODBMS) 
or hooking up to a relational DB using Glorp as mapping framework.
It also depends on the Smalltalk you use - Squeak provided several
persistence solutions, commercial vendors also provide solutions.

If you look for an easy (wizard style) way to develop simple DB app's 
in conjunction with Seaside the "WebVelocity" beta may help
(google for it, its commercial) 

> i just want to make sure that those kinds of expectations don't get  
> broken.

If your company is happy with quickly developed "websites bound to a
 database" just continue with Rails. If you need more sophisticated 
"web applications" use Seaside and choose from Smalltalk stack of 


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