[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Help-smalltalk] Re: GNU vs. Squeak vs. VW

From: Serge Stinckwich
Subject: [Help-smalltalk] Re: GNU vs. Squeak vs. VW
Date: Tue, 17 Jul 2007 10:25:42 +0200
User-agent: Thunderbird (Macintosh/20070604)

Paul D. Fernhout a écrit :

I feel the same sort of frustrations with using Smalltalk to develop
free (or commercial) software. All the Smalltalks have various issues --
just different ones. It is very frustrating.

Squeak has licensing issues and is not modular, but it is very
cross-platform and has a big community. GST is modular and well
licensed, but can be difficult to install and has a small community and
the GUI is incomplete and not very complete or cross-platform (things
continue to improve off course). VisualWorks is modular and very
cross-platform but it isn't free-as-in-freedom (or even
free-to-distribute-commercial as in buy it once). VW also lost ENVY
which I liked. OTI had a great embedded Smalltalk but it is very
proprietary. Dolphin is windows only and not free-as-in-freedom.
Smalltalk/X has a sort-of-free license but not quite IIRC, and no
history as a free software community. The Java Smalltalks are orphaned
for the most part and incomplete (but cross-platform and mostly free,
except for the Squeak-derived ones which suffer from the Squeak
licensing issues).

Because of their communities, it seems to me that GST and Squeak are the
major players if you want a free platform going forward.

You can see my comments on Squeak when I was active on the Squeak-dev
list, say here:
  "Belling the cat of complexity (was: Ship it with Squeak)"
That was one reason I experimented with creating "Embedded Squeak"
(which was a headless Squeak, like GNU Smalltalk in some ways) though
that code is so old don't use it. :-)
You can see an example of my frustration with the Squeak licensing here:
Even though they are (many years) trying to fix it now, I still question
if they are getting a proper copyright assignment from *Disney* which
has a copyright statement in the code. But I can hope.

Beyond the licensing issue, here are other related links on Squeak
issues from around 2000:

From that middle link:
"I'm sorry if I keep coming across as a broken record in most of my
posts to the list over the past few years. A major thrust of what I say
is always the same (perhaps becoming clearer over time as other people
refine it).
To become a serious platform, Squeak needs:
* to be modular (namespaces, buildable image, maybe inter-VM/"object
space" debugging),
* to have at least one stable, easy to use, lockable, scalable GUI,
* to be event driven, and
* to interface easily with the outside world of code.

Squeak licencing isssues will soon be old story. Squeak 1.1 was relicensed by Apple under the Apache License 2.0 last year and all the developers have been asked to relicensed their work under MIT, so we have a complete free system.

The work for the modularisation is also underway : for example there is a now a Squeak image for developers called squeak-dev ( with the last developers goodies and you can add and remove packages with the Universe Browser.

-- Serge Stinckwich

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]