[ANN] Ambrai Smalltalk on mac OSX

Dean_Swan at Mitel.COM Dean_Swan at Mitel.COM
Sat Jun 26 00:39:20 UTC 2004

Hi Avi,

Ambrai Smalltalk has been in development for a LONG time (since about 1998 
if I remember correctly).  It is the work of only two guys with more or 
less, one working mostly on VM type things and both working on image side 
stuff.  They gave a presentation/demonstration at the Ottawa-Carleton 
Smalltalk Users Group last fall.  I believe it's long history is why it is 
carbon and not cocoa.  I think they already had a lot of code written 
pre-OS X.

One thing that bothered me about it is that native UI widgets don't get 
garbage collected - you have to manage that yourself.  From what they said 
at the presentation this is fairly common with native UI's.  Most of my 
experience is with Smalltalk/V (pre-Windows) and Squeak, so I haven't 
really seen how others deal with this.

In any case, it's quite an impressive piece of work for only two guys.

                -Dean Swan

Avi Bryant <avi at beta4.com>
Sent by: squeak-dev-bounces at lists.squeakfoundation.org
06/25/04 03:59 PM
Please respond to The general-purpose Squeak developers list 

        To:     The general-purpose Squeak developers list 
<squeak-dev at lists.squeakfoundation.org>
        Subject:        Re: [ANN] Ambrai Smalltalk on mac OSX

On Jun 25, 2004, at 8:33 AM, Michael Latta wrote:

> Not bad at all for a first beta!  Also because it uses native UI 
> elements it feels FAR faster than Squeak.  Obviously because it uses 
> native UI elements you can not change them.

Yes, although I think we can do much better at native OS X UI in Squeak 
with the Objective C bridge, because we have access to the full AppKit 
class library rather than going through the C API as Ambrai does. 
There are lots of nice things about Ambrai, but I'm bewildered that 
they chose to use Carbon instead of Cocoa for the UI.

For those of us who care about such things, I think there's potentially 
a very nice model there for commercial use of Squeak: develop web apps 
on OS X using a native UI environment, and then deploy headless on 
linux or any other platform you care for.


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