Squeak turns 10!
Today 10/14/2006, the Squeak community
celebrates Squeak’s tenth birthday.
Squeak is an open source Smalltalk environment. The initial development
of Squeak was lead by Alan Kay and Dan Ingalls, the leader and the main
implementor of the original Smalltalk project at Xerox. Today, Squeak
is managed by the Squeak community, several hundreds of Smalltalk
developers all over the world.
Squeak has some unique features (in addition to those of any Smalltalk):
- Morphic. The GUI is built with the
framework. Morphic is a direct manipulation graphic objects framework
that is completely malleable and extensible and doesn’t need
- Portability. Squeak runs almost on any OS
or hardware platform. And if it doesn’t run somewhere yet,
you can port it.
- Slang. Slang is a subset of the Smalltalk
language. Code written in Slang can run as usual but can also be
translated to C and compiled to machine code. The result is a big
- Continuations. A unique feature of
contexts that allows easy programming of software that communicates
over a network. The prime example is Seaside.
- Open VM, written in Squeak. The Squeak VM
example of Slang programming. The big advantage over other VMs is that
it can be run, modified and debugged from within Squeak.
Some innovative technologies are being
for and in Squeak today. These include Traits, Exupery and Spoon. Also,
Squeak is used in several educational and collaboration software
projects. These include Etoys, Croquet, Tweak and Scratch.
You can learn more at http://www.squeak.org/.
To Dan Ingalls and Alan Kay:
Let me thank you for Smalltalk and Squeak.
works are a source of inspiration to me. You are always there, as
guides on how to program and how to think and express ideas.
I first read about Smalltalk in 1984, in one of the very first computer
magazines I ever read. Smalltalk was a research project, inaccessible
to outsiders. It was like science fiction.
I only found it again ten years later at the university. The Purple
Book, the story of Smalltalk and Xerox Parc were parts of a legend. You
were the heroes of an epic story of a previous time. Trying to give
people the sacred fire, like Prometheus.
And suddenly, in 1996 you were back with Squeak! The story wasn't
finished yet, and you were inviting me (all us) to be part of it, and
share the fire with you. The feelings I had at that time are within the
happiest and strongest I've ever had.
Thank you for the Fire!