Henrik Gedenryd has passed away
goran at krampe.se
goran at krampe.se
Tue Oct 11 10:53:51 UTC 2005
I don't recall why I started looking around the Internet for information
about Henrik the latest week - I have always had a strange feeling about
him so abruptly leaving the Squeak community but thought he had just
moved on to other frontiers.
I have now verified (99.9%, it is a very uncommon name in Sweden) with
the Swedish IRS that Henrik Gedenryd in fact passed away in november
2002 at the age of 32. I recall he was working in England at the time
and in an email he sent me just a month before he said he was moving
back home to Sweden in november. I have no idea what happened.
Henrik started participating in the Squeak community back in 1999, I
think his first post is from september that year. IIRC he first "fixed a
few things" like for example getting beautiful fonts and a "nice look"
before he duyg into other things, like Modules.
He helped Dan and SqC at the time to create Squeak 3.3 - with support
for Modules being the main feature. He put in a great effort but due to
various factors 3.3 never came to be a success - but I am sure it was
not due to lack of quality (I have read his code and it is very good),
rather the fact it was too "different" from 3.2 and people simply felt
uneasy - so they didn't "move into the new house". And a Squeak version
that noone "lives in" just dies.
We exchanged quite a bit of emails and the original intention with
SqueakMap was actually to act as a complementary structure on top of
Henrik's Modules system.
Henrik and I met in person in 2001 when we visited OOPSLA together and
shared a hotel room. I found it very interesting to hear his insights
and I realized that, hey, this guy is probably a bit ahead of most of
One thing that clued me in to this is his description of his working
prototype of "Universal Composition" which he also wrote a draft 35-page
paper about (please *do* read it):
...with a corresponding image including code:
(the above image was recently mentioned because of the fonts and the
look, but that is definitely not the reason it is published, as the name
I also recall a very nice dinner with him, me and Ian Piumarta where he
and Ian drifted off talking about weaving and software composition and I
realized I was out of my depth. :)
At OOPSLA Henrik wanted to show his Unversal Composition prototype to
Dan Ingalls and especially how he had rewritten BitBlt using it in a
very beatiful way (see paper for details) but I am not sure they really
got time to look at it properly.
Another thing I remember from that trip is how we played around with the
idea of using a transactional object memory to implement a reversible
Henrik's Ph.D thesis on "How Designers Work" has evidently also created
a bit of attention:
...which among others Chris Rust (Professor of Design and Head of Art &
Design Research Centre
and Head of Product & Knowledge Research Centre, Sheffield Hallam
University) refers to in very impressive words on his page:
Henrik was a really nice guy, even though I know he upset at least one
or two Squeakers over the years, but who hasn't managed to do that? :)
I think it was a great loss to our community and the least thing we can
do to honour his memory is to read his very intriguing paper on
Universal Composition - especially today when we are working with
getting Traits into Squeak.
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