A cleaner Morphic for 3.5 (was: Re: Re-doing Morphic ( Was: Re:Traits prototype image ))

Brent Vukmer bvukmer at blackboard.com
Tue Feb 11 23:04:22 UTC 2003

Andreas, pardon my denseness, but I'm having trouble picturing what
"making the 'system level' part of Squeak more like eToys" would look
like. What is the "right area" to put work into?  What are you

-----Original Message-----
From: Andreas Raab [mailto:andreas.raab at gmx.de]
Sent: Tuesday, February 11, 2003 5:53 PM
To: 'The general-purpose Squeak developers list'
Subject: RE: A cleaner Morphic for 3.5 (was: Re: Re-doing Morphic ( Was:
Re:Traits prototype image ))


> Trivial things are trivially easy in eToys. But what about 
> HARD things.
> Using eToys, how does one make a tree widget? A scrollpane? A List? 
> What about a single button class that doesn't take colors, 
> but shows images? What about making a button flip over in 3D
> as in the old IRIX system? Can I do that? Can eToys script
> those funky 3D-button-menu-flipper things?

It could. If you weren't so focused on throwing them out but rather
on make the things you described easily possible. It's funny in a way.
though I can show you that you could be (roughly speaking) ten times
even though it's probably clear to you that it would benefit many people
(including you and the kids) if you were willing to put that work into
"right" area, you are willing to spend much time in an area where -
speaking - it doesn't matter the least bit.

Mind you - my frustration comes from the fact that so many people out
don't realize the HUGE potential that is behind these techniques. And
proposed way of doing things focuses at exactly the wrong issue - namely
throw out that part with the biggest potential for long term success. To

> Bridging this gap, making the "system level" part of Squeak
> more like eToys is the thing that needs to be done.

  - Andreas

> Hard things are DAMN NEAR IMPOSSIBLE in eToys. Give them a 
> widget that works, and you won't even need to script them in eToys.
> ( Has anyone written anything NON-TRIVIAL in eToys? )
> eToys is for scripting things together. It's for cutting kids 
> teeth in programs.
> Tell me how one can script a windowed FFT algorithm in eToys? 
> I'd much rather prefer to drag out a buttonmorph, tell it how 
> I want it to
> render itself (we got menus, and introspection, why not build 
> the menus from
> looking at the morphs methods, like Morphic Wrappers?), and go. 
> Or even just say something like.. 
> button -> new Buttonmorph
> button render: someCostume on: #MouseUp 
> button render: someCostume on: #MouseDown
> button OpenInWorld.
> Where someCostume could be any sort of thing we'd like. This 
> is just an off the
> cuff example. ( NB, render could do anything, I mean, it 
> could cause it to play
> a sound too, if we send the appropiate messages).
> button render: sqwakSound on: #MouseUp
> button render: niftySvgIcon on: #MouseUp
> Now, while yer dragging and dropping from the tilelist, and 
> looking for the
> proper tiles ( some of which don't seem to work right, and 
> adding/deleting tiles
> can be glitchy at times, it's why I don't mess with eToys 
> much ), I'll have a
> new button ready to go, and I can clone and play with it with 
> handles now.
> Then it's 100% simpler than eToys.
> I'm a programmer, not a 10 year old. And there are some 
> things that are best
> done at the eToy level, and some things best done at the 
> Smalltalk level.
> If we provide a set of consistent morphs, and protocols, then 
> everything will
> work faster, and better. Plus a consistent set of protocols 
> would make scripting
> via eToys easier too.
> Right now, I'm working on a project in PHP. But PHP is not 
> fast enough, nor
> perfect for everything. DB stuff is done on Oracle with 
> PL/SQL ( Oh wait, I
> could implement a simple flatfile DB in PHP!), the rendering 
> is done with HTML
> and PHP.
> PHP is simple, but I'm not going to write a DB with it.
> -Daniel
> I just had some ideas today, and I'll lay them out tonight. 
> TRAITS may prove
> essential to creating a new flexible framework for Morphic. 
> > Nothing personal, but as of now, this is the most 
> frustating message I have
> > seen in this thread. Don't you realize that the Morphic 
> that is perfect for
> > eToys *is* the one that is perfect for programmers?
> > 
> > I'll give you just one example: If I want to make a button 
> in eToys, here is
> > what I do. I go to the supplies flap, grab a rectangle, 
> open its viewer,
> > drag out the "color <- <...>" tile, set the color I want, 
> set the trigger to
> > "mouse down", grab a second "color <- <...>" tile, change 
> it to "mouse up"
> > and done.
> > 
> > Cheers,
> >   - Andreas
> > 
> > 

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