[Vm-dev] Cog: A question about: setInterruptCheckChain()
astares at gmx.de
Fri Oct 1 07:50:45 UTC 2010
Anything I can say on this topic is that it works well
to move more and more stuff moved from the VM to the image
and once you are used to it you will see that writing
external DLL's/plugins is cumbersome and only required
in special cases.
Writing a plugin doesnt mean you have more memory security
since it can have a bug too. Also look at the long development
cycle using C/C++ and the need to set up the tools correctly.
Yes, I know there is Smalltalk/X where you can write C directly
in the method body - but I still think Smalltalk has more power
And it works well to do most stuff in Smalltalk itself:
Look at Smalltalk/MT - you can easily call API functions
in Smalltalk style:
WINAPI MessageBox: 0 with: szText with: szTitle with: 0.
Here is an example method and since it is directly in
Smalltalk(MT) it is easily changeable and debuggable:
Formats an error string, given the error code.
uError A system error code
A String with an error description.
| count pBuffer answer|
pBuffer := LONG localNew.
count := WINAPI FormatMessage: FORMAT_MESSAGE_FROM_SYSTEM | FORMAT_MESSAGE_ALLOCATE_BUFFER
with: NULL " ignored "
with: NULL " language identifier "
with: pBuffer basicAddress
with: 1 " minimum number of characters "
count == 0 ifTrue: [
_DEBUG_USER == TRUE ifTrue: [
(WINAPI GetLastError) ~= uError ifTrue: [
^String wsprintf: 'System Error 0x%x' with: uError
answer := String fromAddress: pBuffer.
WINAPI LocalFree: pBuffer.
Smalltalk MT also provides the ability to expose a method/block as
callback to external code - just put it in a special "callback" method
In Smallscript/S# it was even more easier to do since David
Simmons allowed you to mix syntax styles and import libs
Also see http://double.co.nz/smallscript/unofficialfaq.htm
With an easy to use FFI/Callback mechanism Smalltalkers would be
able to integrate more with the platform. I think this is one
of the major problems for acceptance of Smalltalk. Where is
Squeak's COM binding, interfacing with the window system, ...
Currently only a few of us really integrate with the outside world
because they know how to write plugins...
It is just to cumbersome how it is today!
I agree with others here: we have the power and tools in Smalltalk
and should move more and more stuff to the image.
Make it run, make it right and then make it fast (and only in the
worst case with a custom plugin written in C).
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