[Seaside] Should I become a Seasider?

Philippe Marschall philippe.marschall at gmail.com
Sat Apr 9 08:04:10 UTC 2011

2011/4/8 Ralph Boland <rpboland at gmail.com>:
> This post is about making a living as a web developer using Seaside.
> I am an unemployed software developer in Calgary (1,000,000 people),
> Alberta, Canada.
> I have used Squeak for years but I have found no Smalltalk work in Calgary
> and in fact know of only one small company in Calgary that uses Smalltalk.
> I know very little about Seaside.  My impression is that websites
> developed using
> Seaside are somewhat slower than with other web development tools and that
> Seaside uses more memory (I assume on the server side) than other web
> development tools.  Nevertheless there are web developers using
> Seaside successfully.
> Are these impressions correct?
> What I am wondering is should I learn Seaside and then attempt to sell my web
> development services in Calgary?  My impression is that:
> 1)  No one in Calgary has ever heard of Seaside so selling my services
> would be difficult.
> 2)  Since I should be able to develop web sites faster using Seaside I
> should be able to
>     offer my services at a discount and hopefully be able to find
> business that way.  But
>     since no one but myself (at least locally) would be able to
> maintain the web sites,
>     potential customers are going to be very shy.
> Are these impressions correct?
> Lets assume I decide to become a web developer (something I know
> almost nothing about)
> using Seaside as my competitive edge. To my knowledge I would be the
> only Seaside
> web developer in Calgary.
> 1)  How long (starting basically from scratch) is it going to take
> before I am competent;
>     or at least competent enough to seek clients?  Assume I am a
> competent Squeak developer.
> 2)  Which version(s) of Smalltalk should I use?
>     I know Squeak and have used Visualworks in the distant past.
> 3)  How screwed will my clients be if my ticker stops unexpectedly.
> Can Seaside developers
>     from outside Calgary pick up the slack for my hypothetical clients?
> 4)  Is there any areas within the web development would that I should
> concentrate on or avoid?
> 5)  Is there any additional software/hardware that I would need other than my
>     home computer (running Ubuntu) and Squeak/Seaside?
>     My resources for investments is very limited.
> Are there other questions that I should have asked?
> Starting a business is generally a tough deal so please don't butter me up
> with glowing reviews of Seaside.

If you know almost nothing about web development and don't know
Seaside as well I'd advise against it. First you'll have to learn
HTML, CSS, JavaScript. Then you'll have to learn how to operate a web
application and a database.

My advice would be to look for an other job and get comfortable with
Seaside by dabbling with it in your free time.


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