New Squeaker Introduction

Marcus Pedersén marcus.pedersen at
Wed Nov 23 20:05:48 UTC 2005

I have also walked this way through frustration from Java to squeak.
In java you've got the doc for the classes that gives you a description for 
the class and the methods. In squeak there is missing quite some comments 
and classdescriptions and what I felt was frustrating in the begining was 
that when you have find a message that you think you should be able to use 
and you start to read the code to figure out if it's what you're after. The 
code in the message is depending on a number of other objects that you don't 
know about and you have to look them up and they depend on other objects 
that you don't know about and you have to look them up and so on...
Second of all there are some realy good "beginners" books on java that gives 
you a "kick start".
But after that frustration in the beginning ( I think I have passed the 
worse) I can just say that Squeak is fantastic! I just love it!
Come on Java what about the programmer enviroment!! Smalltalk (Squeak) 
/ Marcus
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Klaus D. Witzel" <klaus.witzel at>
To: <squeak-dev at>
Sent: Wednesday, November 23, 2005 8:08 PM
Subject: Re: New Squeaker Introduction

> Hi Jason,
> on Wed, 23 Nov 2005 17:35:51 +0100, you <jason at> wrote:
>> Greetings All,
>> I'm a newbie squeaker, and I've been digging into squeak for two weeks 
>> now. I
>> have to say, comming for other environments (Java, Perl, Python, etc..), 
>> I
>> really love how this language has twisted my thinking around and given 
>> me new
>> insight into programming in general. The little bit of tinkering and 
>> research
>> that I've done has really expanded my thinking, and things that other 
>> languages
>> (Java and Python) have inherited from Smalltalk just make sense now =).
>> However, I have to argue the commonly held belief that Smalltalk is easy 
>> to
>> learn. While it's true that I learned the general syntax in a day or two 
>> easily,
>> being able to produce useful code still escapes me. I feel that learning
>> Smalltalk is actually pretty difficult since you must also learn the 
>> class lib
>> to be able to do anything in the language. I don't feel that you can 
>> seperate
>> the syntax from the class lib while learning the language. Throw the 
>> enviornment
>> on top of all that and it becomes pretty confusing to newbies. The 
>> barrier to
>> entry is pretty high at this point.
> This is an interesting point indeed and one which always makes me curious. 
> Have (Java and Phyton) people learned the Java class library and the 
> Python class library in a couple of hours or by self studing? Please do 
> not take my question personally, I just want to ask that to a *real* 
> person who has actually *made* this experience (of trying to learn 
> Smalltalk after Java and Python) and not somebody who has read about such 
> difficulty. So, if that is a question for you then please, tell us how 
> you've learned Java and Python.
> Thank you very much in advance.
> /Klaus

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