[Vm-dev] An event driven Squeak VM

Andreas Raab andreas.raab at gmx.de
Wed Nov 11 18:58:34 UTC 2009

Eliot Miranda wrote:
> Andreas counters that implementing the abstractions in the VM keeps them 
> well-defined and free from meddling.  But that runs counter to the 
> philosophy of an open system and preventing inadvertent meddling is 
> something Smalltalk has to do anyway  (e.g. "Process should not be 
> redefined, proceed to store over it").  The nice things about shooting 
> oneself in the foot by meddling with a Smalltalk system are that a) it 
> doesn't really do any harm and b) the debugging of it can be a great 
> learning experience.

I disagree with both of these statements 100%. First, once you have 
passed the first invalid pointer to some C function you will find out 
the hard way that "not really doing any harm" means, oh well it'll crash 
your image instead of raising a debugger. The consequence of this is 
that for any serious development you will no longer want to do in-image 
development; consider writing C code inside the running C app and then 
have it core-dump every time you misspell something. Not exactly my 
definition of "not really doing any harm". Secondly, wading through gobs 
of platform specific code is only a great learning experience if you are 
trying to learn platform specific stuff. Otherwise it's a useless 
distraction that only gets into your way of seeing (and using) the 

   - Andreas

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