[Squeakfoundation]The update stream, 3.4, 3.5, harvesting

Doug Way dway at riskmetrics.com
Tue Feb 4 20:24:12 CET 2003

Finally replying to this earlier message...

Tim Rowledge wrote:
> A couple of thoughts on the text in the Welcome to... window:-
> Since the entire code for the vm is _not_ included (and actually never
> was except for Macs of course) we should rephrase that bit.
> How about:-
> "Squeak is a rapidly moving project based on Smalltalk-80, with which
> it is still reasonably compatible. Squeak includes a full integrated
> development environment, networking, sound synthesis and sampling,
> speech synthesis, 2 & 3D graphics, arithmetic and data structure
> libraries. It even incorporates tools to produce the core code for its
> own virtual machine so that you can build your own VM; see <whatever the
> url for the vm making page on swiki is>"

Those changes sound good to me.  (I was going to complain the you removed a bit about all source code being included, but that's still covered in the following paragraph in the Welcome window.)

Actually, a minor quibble: Including a longish URL related to VM-making seems like a bit much in the very first intro paragraph to Squeak.  Perhaps we can interrupt the flow less by ending your last sentence with "...build your own VM." and then linking just the word "VM" to the VMMaker page on the swiki, by creating an alt-6 DoIt: VM<Scamper openOnUrl: 'http://minnow.cc.gatech.edu/squeak/2105'>

> Why is the old Back to the future page pointed to as an ftp fetch? Can't
> we put it on the squeak.org website 'normally'?

Not sure, probably a good idea for the next time we update the website. (not high priority, though)

> The Projects section notes "Others, probably more recent than this
> release, may be found (someday)..." - shouldn't this be less tentative
> by now?

Yes, that should be changed.  To what, I don't know. ;-)  It looks like the stepping-stone project that it refers to was never fleshed out.  Perhaps we should change it to "Other projects may be found by selecting the 'FIND' button on the Navigator bar at the bottom of the screen."

(Of course, the SuperSwiki has been around for awhile now and has lots of older projects and no mechanism for making sure that you're downloading a project that is compatible with 3.4.  But what the heck, the Navigator is available anyway so we might as well point it out.)

> Although the window furniture is probably reasonably familir looking to
> most people, it might be worth
> a) adding a balloon help to the scrollbar widgets
> b) adding a text morph of some variety tellng people to move the mouse
> around and let it linger on the icons to find out what they do. That
> should at least let people know how to open up the other windows!

I think it may be a bit late to include this stuff with 3.4, unless someone comes up with ready-made content.  Actually, I'm not sure these two items are really necessary anyway.  The "lingering" type of balloon help in Squeak is pretty common in other UIs, and I might argue that scrollbar widgets are so universally recognized these days that adding balloon help there is akin to engraving instructions on a doorknob. ;-)  (I don't think Apple provides balloon help for its scrollbars any longer, for example.)

> Other options I can imagine capable morphers producing
> a scrolling text morph with a highlights of squeak message
> a tabbed notebook with pages for each topic
> a project with lots of explanatory bits and animations, labelled 'Press
> here for beginners help' in large friendly letters.

This stuff would also be good for a future release, if someone wants to work on this.

So in summary, I think we should make the Welcome window changes above for the 3.4 release.

- Doug

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