One more gripe/question

Scott Wallace scott.wallace at
Mon Apr 1 09:15:51 UTC 2002

The "scripting area" is a bit of a relic from the early days of 
Etoys.  As such, it hardly deserves much mindshare, and the only 
reason why we continue to make it available is because of its ability 
to support localized stop-step-go-button complexes -- see item c 

Aiming at quite young children, we were attempting to streamline 
several important steps in the etoy construction process, and some of 
those configuration choices are still embodied in the "scripting 
areas," including:

(a)  After the user finishes painting a new object in the pale-green 
playfield, its Viewer is automatically put up.  (Initiate such a 
painting by grabbing a paint-palette-icon from the Supplies flap and 
dropping it over the pale-green playfield.)

(b)  When the mouse moves over an object on that playfield, halos are 
automatically put up for it.

(c)  Its stop/step/go buttons govern only the running of scripts 
belonging to objects within the scripting area.

(d)  It comes ready-made with a trash-can.

(e)  Viewers appear at the right edge of the scripting area, rather 
than at the right edge of the screen.

If you had for example two or more different simulations that you 
wanted independent control over on the same screen (e.g. sometimes 
running only one, sometimes another one, sometimes both concurrently, 
sometimes neither,) you could organize each of them into a separate 
scripting area;  you could then control the stop-step-go status of 
each of them separately.  And you could move entire simulations 
around on the screen, and store each of them in a file independently 
of the others at a granularity finer than a Project.

Unless you have a particular need for multiple independent 
stop/step/go domains (an effect that would be quite tricky to obtain 
otherwise,) I think you'd be wise to follow Ned's advice and just go 
with exploring scripting in a vanilla morphic project.

Hope this helps,

   -- Scott

PS:  Nobody ever expected that the early scripting work (and it's 
*all* still "early") would be self-explanatory.  Users need to be 
"scaffolded" -- by sitting on a parent's lap, or learning it as part 
of a school curriculum, or learning it from another child who already 
knows it; and in any case, examples and tutorials are assumed to be 
essential pieces of the process.  Check out the Squeakland site for 
at least some taste of this kind of material.

At 7:38 PM -0800 3/31/02, Ned Konz wrote:
>On Sunday 31 March 2002 07:08 pm, David Chase wrote:
>>  What's with the scripting area?  I'm playing with 3.0final,
>>  2 processor PC, Win 2k sp2.  I've been clicking on the
>>  scripting-area thing in the "tools", dragging left, and
>>  it just sits there unresponsive, unmoveable, un-anything.
>>  It did this before, but I thought I had messed something
>  > up with all my poking and clicking, so I started fresh.
>  > I thought this was where I was supposed to go and play.
>  > What am I missing?
>  >
>  > David Chase
>I haven't been able to figure out what that's for either. Perhaps one of the
>eToy experts here could help. But my impressions so far:
>Basically, it's the same kind of thing as the World itself. I _think_ (though
>am not sure) that it doesn't really provide any capabilities that you _need_
>for scripting. Though you can collapse the whole thing, size it, or move it
>about. This may be useful for you. Scripting is just as easy without it. I'd
>explore scripting without using it (I'd use a new Project instead for
>organizing related Morphs and their scripts). Maybe Alan or Ted could explain
>what it's for.

More information about the Squeak-dev mailing list