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Saturday, June 18, 2005

Squeak and stdin/stdout

I had a discussion with a couple of squeakers today. The main theme of the meeting was about our new web site for Japanese squeak develpers, but there was another interesting topic in the discussion. Standard input and output support in Squeak should be one of key aspect to make Squeak more populer. Sometimes, I've heard that the difficulty to combine another program is a reason that ordinary programmer feels Squeak unfamilier. Although, most of end users don't use stdio/stdin to connect applications these days. But programing fan including me still like to use such traditional way as its simplisity. For example, I am writing this topic with an emacs derivative in WindowsXP. Frequency, I strike a key Control Alt $ to invoke spell checker, or Control C + w to invoke English Japanese dictionary. These function are not in emacs, but external commands with a pipe stream. That was originaly a common operation style in Unix, and we can share bounty of the philosophy even if we use Windows. So non-support of stdio in Squeak seems a defect for hackers daily use. Fortunately, I found a work about this area named OSProcess. That was a impressive work! but a bad news is OSProcess does not support stdio in Windows. I don't know about how OSProcess works, but I start to think to make Windows support of it. Abe-san said he had used a proprietary Smalltalk as a batch language like /bin/sh. I imagine Squeak also should be good language as such glue.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Planning a demonstration of TVML + Croquet

I have a plan to show my work of TVML + Croquet at NICT public exhibition day the end of July. I have made a PowerPoint slide (I prefer Sqeueak! but they demanded it) and show at last NICT meeting. In the exhibition, main audience are neighborhood children. A lot of kids who are science fun would come. So we have a plan to show 10 PCs connected with Croquet for one whole day. 10 PCs ?! I have never seen such number of hosts connected with Croquet. I know current Croquet network implementation is a bit fragile. Actually, a friend of mine have tried to know how many number computers which can connected in Croquet same time, in that time (2 years ago), the result was only 4 hosts for a few minutes. Besides, this is not just a presentation, but a real demo. the users are hackish children who like to type the keyboard randomly. But I think this is exciting challenge.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Kansai Daigaku Workshop

Kansai Daigaku Workshop Posted by Hello Last week, I conducted a Squeak Etoys workshop at Kansai University. There were 60 students from media course, conputer science, and education cource. For the workshop, I used a special version of Squeak with numeric color control tiles, customized viewer, and morph sharing tab (Super Parts Bin). Although we had troubles some bugs of etoys, I think workshop itself was succees. The workshop was 7 hours. First 3 hours are tutorial for basic technique as "Drive A Car" curriculum. Rest 4 hours are for discussion and practice for theme. The theme of the workshop was "Introduce yourself". Some students could make really impressive work even if such short time. But again, I always think that programming etoys is not easy if you want to complicated project especially for conputer science students. They have complained me Squeak is harder than C++! ;)
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