[squeak-dev] Re: what is holding back Smalltalk?

Alejandro F. Reimondo aleReimondo at smalltalking.net
Sat Nov 22 10:42:11 UTC 2008

Dear Paul,

> In the syntax case, I am continuing to point out that Smalltalk's keyword
> syntax (e.g. "Point x: 10 y: 20" versus "Point(10, 20)" ) produces code
> where all arguments are labeled and so it is easier to read and
> understand.

In Smalltalk we write
     10 @ 20

written that way, aPoint emerges from the dialogue (a message WAS sent)
 between two universal objects (named 10 and 20).
The result, aPoint occurs as a concecuence of an action, and it can help
 (a person) to try what he/she can do with the resulting object
 whithout previous reading.

With Point(10,20), you need to know about Point theory,
 you force understanding before acting (why?).

Transform an action on universal objects in a responsibility
 of a global object (named Point... that can be, e.g. aClass).

Smalltalk is a support for education, it do not impose
 apriory-understanding; no instruction is requiered.
And most of the times, people "enter" and actOn: Smalltalk
 before be instructed, and most times before reading any book on it.

Smalltalk is interesting for children, not because it preserves
 innocence. It is interesting because it preserves freedom, that
 is related with uncertanty (of evaluating before understanding)
 and not with security and instruction (e.g. war ... Point() ).

It is not important how much versions of free software exists,
 it is important how much free people exists.

When we born, be are inmenselly rich. We can be anything.
>From there we can only become more of what we are,
 loosing possibility to be an instance of another class (Point
 preceding the numbers that are also constrained by brakets).

Smalltalk show (at each "doit") that you can doIt
 whithout apriory understanding. The important point is to learn
 how to doIt without breaking the system, e.g. with compromise
 in stability of a system (and using more the senses than
 the mind).
And it also help to understand that you can change all the
 parts of a system, and if you doit without breaking it,
 the identity of the system is preserved (as has been occurring
 w/smalltalk in the last +35years, and in our bodies that change
 all the cells doing our life).

It is not related with syntax nor structure, nor intention.
It is related with identity and freedom.

have fun with smalltalk and success with preserving innocence
 of people that love brackets, ... and simplicity

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