Some questions about Spoon

Craig Latta craig at
Thu Aug 10 19:54:21 UTC 2006

> > > I'm surprised not to see development discussion on this
> > > mailing-list except craig reports. Do you use another way of
> > > communicating?
> >
> > We communicate by direct email, telephone, IM, and the Squeak
> > IRC channel, whichever is most convenient and effective at the
> > moment.
> Ok so this means that nobody beside you guys can follow. So clearly
> this is not really an invitation to others.

     Stef, I must disagree strongly. In the very message to which you
just replied, I spelled out very explicitly how people can help. They
can download the most recent release[1] and ask questions. They can ask,
here in this forum, what they can do to help (e.g., make the VM smaller).

     It does take actually interacting with other people to participate
in this project right now, rather than just perusing artifacts, that is
true. But that hardly means that additional people cannot participate.

     Perhaps when we have gotten further with collaboration tools for
Spoon, the development style will become more to your liking.

> But this is your right. But I cannot learn anything from your
> discussions.

     Stef, I have encouraged all participants to use the Spoon mailing
list whenever possible for discussion. Please keep two things in mind
about this: I cannot make people do anything, and at times there are
more effective means of communication than a mailing list. I will do my
best to forward things from other forums.

     And you can learn from previous discussions that weren't
recapitulated here: you can ask any of us about them!

> too bad and I cannot judge if I want to invest time.

     What exactly do you need to know in order to make that decision?
I'm right here, Stef, I can answer any question you have about this
project. Surely the information you desire is attainable. I suggest you
come by the Squeak IRC channel so we can discuss this in a live, public,
logged forum for all to see. I'm there on weekdays from 1700 to 0200 GMT.

> > Also, we're working on fairly distinct (and large) tasks. Brenda
> > Larcom is working on a version of Flow (Spoon's initial networking
> > framework) which is backward-compatible with earlier versions of
> > Squeak.
> Do you mean that you can load that it is not compatible with latest
> version?

     Brenda is making a version of Flow that is compatible with Squeak
3.2, 3.6, 3.7, 3.8 and 3.9. Please see Brenda's progress report[2].

> > John Dougan is interested in making the virtual machine smaller.
> Sounds cool. Do you imply cleaner version?

     By smaller, I mean minimal, just as I am making a minimal version
of the object memory. This will undoubtedly be cleaner.

> > Anyway, so far the active tasks have been very large, with
> > relatively infrequent releases. I know this goes against the grain
> > of a typical open-source project, but it's also part of the nature
> > of a large bootstrapping effort.
> This basically does not show activity nor transparency so you lose and
> lurkers too.

     Activity is shown by progress reports to the Spoon mailing list.
They aren't as frequent as you would like, but they are there (and they
aren't as noisy as, for example, the Squeak list). Some people do
realize that there isn't a direct correspondence between voluminous
conversation and meaningful activity.

     This project is in a stage where participants must be more
proactive, and the work is relatively hard. It will not always be this way.

> Your implications is idiot but this is your problem not mine.

     Stef, you are now being rude. Please keep those sorts of comments
to yourself.

> Now if I would not care about spoon I would have just look at the
> mailing-list and thought that it was a single project where one guy is
> working and that we do not know where he is going or if we adhere to
> the goals and resulting designs.

     In my progress reports, I have stated very clearly where I am going
and what my goals are, and discussed many design details.

> But sure I'm talking so I stop.

     I did not say that all talking is bad, or even that your talking is
bad. I said sometimes, for each person, working is more important than
talking, so that the talking can be more meaningful.

> We were discussing with marcus about your idea of removing names from
> classes and our intuition is that class have a name.

     Note that, in the Spoon implementation, classes still have names. I
never said or did anything about "removing names from classes". What's
new is how those names are used (or more precisely, how they are used less).

> the fact that the implementation may not require a name is a different
> issue. what is sad is that I did not see discussions around these
> ideas.

     So why didn't you have that discussion here on the Spoon mailing
list? :)  I encourage you to do so! I invited discussion about this and
many other aspects of Spoon on both the Spoon and squeak-dev mailing lists.

> But again I'm talking.

     Stef, you are being sarcastic. It serves no constructive purpose.
Talking is what mailing lists are for, and you know it. Please feel free.

     thanks again,




Craig Latta

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