FFI vs. Plugins (was: CCD data acquisition & Squeak)

Bert Freudenberg bert at isg.cs.uni-magdeburg.de
Wed Sep 13 10:59:54 UTC 2000

On Wed, 13 Sep 2000, Henrik Gedenryd wrote:

> in my experience, FFI is invaluable for developing a Squeak interface to an
> external library. While apparently SqC has political concerns with it (which
> I don't think I agree with) [...]

Really? IMHO it's just that FFI is inherently insecure and platform
dependent, so the core system should work without it, that is, using
regular plugin modules.

> In short, FFI allows you to do Smalltalk-style development, while
> the plugin style requires traditional compile-link-etc. style.

Agreed. It makes it a lot easier.

> So using FFI is essential for this. 

Actually, it shouldn't be too hard to make a "Recompile module x" button
that translates it, unloads a previous version, calls a C compiler to
compile it, and reloads the module. In ST/X this works quite nicely.
Actually, there you only need to "accept" a primitive method in the
browser to get the whole process going.

-- Bert

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