SmalltalkImage current

stephane ducasse stephane.ducasse at
Fri Jun 29 12:10:07 UTC 2007


After trying to clean SystemDictionary  I think that at the end what  
should be done
(I proposed that but we did not do it at the end because we were burnt):
- is to keep Smalltalk as a placeholder for image related behavior  
like saving, abandonning sources,...
- have a namespace class which support class/global management
I proposed a migration path but (I did not have the energy to have a  
prototype of what I was proposing
May be I should- but back then I was burnt and sick of complains).

> I meant I had problems with software that had to be changed. And
> yes I reported it. It was at least RemoteFramebuffer and Glorp
> where I reported and provided fixes. Do you remember me trying to
> contact Ian ?

But did you enter big reports in mantis because this is the only way  
to keep track
of bug and that we can fix and improve them.

>> you can find the complete motivation in the archives but in a
>> nutshell the point
>> was that Smalltalk is a namespace and that over time it agglomerates
>> a lot of extra behavior (sometimes junk) that has nothing to do with
>> namespace management.
>> But with bookkeeping of the image. We tried to clean it up but we
>> also stopped in the middle
>> since we were pissed off by complains.
> Ah, ok, cleaning up _is_ indeed a good motivation for doing it.

We were always aware that we were introducing changes and that it  
would affect people
this is always this tension between moving and staying at the same  

> Were there alternative suggestions from those who did complain?

Not to do it. Smalltalk is cool :)
Random refactoring...

> While this work is stopped in the middle of ... this is still a task
> to compete it or to roll it back?

We got sick of squeak. :)

> What makes me wonder is the fact that most of the bigger changes are
> discussed here up front and very extensive. So I can't understand why
> there were so much complaints _after_ the changes.

because it was incremental and not that discussed. Even if it makes a  
lot of sense
to have SmalltalkImage and SystemDictionary separate classes.

> It sounds good. I'll have a look at it if I find some spare time. Just
> to figure out what it's all about.
>>> Btw. how much smalltalk images I'm able to run. new
>>> is disabled. I don't get it.
>> me neither
> Ok, now I understand why it is like it is. Thanks for explaining your
> motivation. I didn't want to step on your excellent work I just wasn't
> able to find anything useful on the net about this change.

What I can tell you is that we always try to pay attention and this is
also why we got burn. We had this vision (dan one) that a system should
be lean and clean that people can really learn from it. Now some  
were made and may be they were not optimal....


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