[squeak-dev] RE: We are preparing to this year Google Summer of Code (GSoC)

Dimitry Golubovsky golubovsky at gmail.com
Fri Mar 11 15:50:14 UTC 2011


Dmitry Matveev wrote:

Squeak is already ported to Android but lacked hardware keyboard
support. Do not know about networking and other features.

Finishing a port would be a good project for GSoC, I think.


We had a long thread:


unfortunately it declined to the problems of running Closure VM on OLPC ;)

Anyway, I am working on the port currently, just because I nave a
practical need in a certain Smalltalk application running on a tablet.
I am doing quick and dirty experiments on integration with Android,
and just have no time to do a clean port. Besides, what was done in
the "parent" project used older version of VM and image.

What could be done for GSOC by someone interested:

 * using a more recent version of VM, generate C sources, see how
VMMaker needs to be modified to produce sources compatible with
android NDK (I have a feeling that whatever was initially made by
VMMaker underwent some manual modifications in the very beginning)

 * keeping VM-related tools in order, so such sources might be
regenerated for future versions of VM

 * create a minimal master image suitable for further installation of
actual apps into it

 * solving a problem of saving image on Android (disabled in the
current port) - or making a decision that saving image is not
feasible, but apps need to be able to save their state

 * better integration with activity lifecycle (unlike on Linux, an
activity can be killed by the kernel in many situations: see what can
be preserved for proper resumption)

 * usability (e. g. proper intent filter so one can download an image
from the internet, and invoke Squeak on it by tapping)

 * app wrapper to distribute prepared images with applications as apk files

etc, etc...

These are the problems I have identified do far in the course of my
development. There will be more ;)

But my goal is to get the application working, and I just don't have
time to take care of all the abovementioned unless it is absolutely
necessary for the application.

Someone focused on the port itself may allocate more time for this.


PS There was a problem with soft keyboard, but I solved it (one
remaining problem is handling of the DEL key in android's stock soft
keyboard, but it requires writing a custom input method subclass as I
was able to conclude).

Dimitry Golubovsky

Anywhere on the Web

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