Squeak and Namespaces

Klaus D. Witzel klaus.witzel at cobss.com
Thu Nov 30 09:19:47 UTC 2006

Hi G"oran,

on Thu, 30 Nov 2006 09:33:01 +0100, you wrote:
> Hi!
> There is AFAICT nothing really stopping us from putting some kind of
> "imports" into the system later. But it has the following "problems":
> 1. We loose the "single mode" that is a large part of the Smalltalk feel.
> In Squeak I can type an expression anywhere and just "do it". With  
> imports
> you suddenly get the inevitable question "In what context?".

This is exactly the *explicit* situation of the automated language  
translator and the [tendentially] *implicit* situation of the human reader  
/ listener, thank you G"oran for bringing this up!

Nothing else than *this* *situation* needs most of our attention, when  
making [partially?] irreversible decisions on namespace concepts.

For quite some decades, the automating linguists have solved this problem  
by assigning specialized microglossaries to [arbitrary] portions of text,  
a (re-)usable example is:

- www.microglossary.net

A nontrivial real-world example for all the consequences (the good, the  
bad and the ugly), in the realm of the automated field of our discussion,  
with conceptually (microglossary := microtheory), is

- http://www.cyc.com/cycdoc/ref/cycl-syntax.html

> What is the consequence? Well, in *practice* this emulates my solution -
> only type short names and it asks when there are choices.

And preserve that during fileOut? And cause conflicts (DNU's?) during  

> You hardly ever
> look at the imports anymore - which is yet another evidence that you
> typically *know* what you use/import.

Except when you hunt for bugs where two methods of the same class (and on  
the same side) use different namespaces?

> Ok, I hate the way imports get into my face in Java. And people are more
> or less only offering solutions based on very similar models. I really
> would like for people to try to think "out of the box" here. And I am not
> referring to you Andreas - you already have enough insight. But others
> might benefit from at least *contemplating* that namespaces:
> - Don't *have* to be hierarchical.
> - Don't *have* to use file/class/package level imports.
  - Don't *have* to be explicit.

> regards, Göran

More information about the Squeak-dev mailing list