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smalltalk

ESUG 2011 Schedule

July 18, 2011 10:24:21.033

The initial schedule for the ESUG 2011 conference is now online - the talks look interesting, making me wish my schedule made going possible!

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st4u

ST 4U 108: Finishing the CounterView UI in WB Pro

July 18, 2011 9:27:21.648

Today's Smalltalk 4 You continues the brief tutorial on WindowBuilder Pro, by hooking up a domain object to the UI we painted last time. If you have trouble viewing it here in the browser, you can also navigate directly to YouTube. To watch now, click on the image below:

WB Pro.

If you have trouble viewing that directly, you can click here to download the video directly. If you need the video in a Windows Media format, then download that here.

You can also watch it on YouTube:


Today we'll continue our introduction to WindowBuilder pro in VA Smalltalk. Last time we painted the UI - today, we'll hook the UI we painted up to the simple Counter application we built awhile ago.

To refresh a bit, here's the simple UI we built - an input field for the current value, and a button to increment the value:

Simple UI

One thing we didn't do is hook the button up to any behavior. To do that, we need to define a callback - a SMalltalk method that will be invoked when the button is pressed:

Define Callback

You can doa number of things in the callback definition UI, but we're going to take the simplest tack: hook up a callback for when the button is pressed:

Defining the Callback

Go back to the browser and look at the code that got generated again - you should notice a new section for the callback:

Callback specified

Now we'll getinto hooking the UI up to a domain object. We'll define an instance variable in the UI to hold the domain object, and instantiate it in the initialize method:

Set up the domain

Next, we'll set up the callback method to use the domain object when the button is pressed. To update the input field, we need to grab it by name using #widgetNamed:, and then use the #value: message to set the value into it:

Set up the Functionality

Finally, we can test the UI. Open it up and you should see the input field incrementing when you press the button:

Working UI

That's it - we've created a simple UI that hooks up to a domain object, and updates the state of the domain based on UI actions. With that, you should be able to get started building more useful things with WindowBuilder Pro!

Need more help? There's a screencast for other topics like this which you may want to watch. Questions? Try the "Chat with James" Google gadget over in the sidebar.

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podcastAAC

IM 38: Polycephaly at StS 2011 (AAC)

July 17, 2011 12:20:59.518

Welcome to episode 38 of Independent Misinterpretations - a Smalltalk and dynamic language oriented podcast with James Robertson, Michael Lucas-Smith, and David Buck.

This we have another session from Smaltalk Solutions 2011 - Cincom's Arden Thomas talking about Polycephaly, their solution to utilizing multi-core systems more fully. For more information on where Polycephaly is going, have a look at Michael's recent post on the topic.

You can subscribe to the podcast in iTunes (or any other podcatching software) using this feed directly or in iTunes with this one.

To listen now, you can either download the mp3 edition, or the AAC edition. The AAC edition comes with chapter markers. You can subscribe to either edition of the podcast directly in iTunes; just search for Smalltalk and look in the Podcast results. You can subscribe to the mp3 edition directly using this feed, or the AAC edition using this feed using any podcatching software. You can also download the podcast in ogg format.

If you like the music we use, please visit Josh Woodward's site. We use the song Troublemaker for our intro/outro music. I'm sure he'd appreciate your support!

If you have feedback, send it to jarober@gmail.com - or visit us on Facebook - you can subscribe in iTunes using this iTunes enabled feed.. If you enjoy the podcast, pass the word - we would love to have more people hear about Smalltalk!

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podcast

IM 38: Polycephaly at StS 2011

July 17, 2011 12:20:26.289

Welcome to episode 38 of Independent Misinterpretations - a Smalltalk and dynamic language oriented podcast with James Robertson, Michael Lucas-Smith, and David Buck.

This we have another session from Smaltalk Solutions 2011 - Cincom's Arden Thomas talking about Polycephaly, their solution to utilizing multi-core systems more fully. For more information on where Polycephaly is going, have a look at Michael's recent post on the topic.

You can subscribe to the podcast in iTunes (or any other podcatching software) using this feed directly or in iTunes with this one.

To listen now, you can either download the mp3 edition, or the AAC edition. The AAC edition comes with chapter markers. You can subscribe to either edition of the podcast directly in iTunes; just search for Smalltalk and look in the Podcast results. You can subscribe to the mp3 edition directly using this feed, or the AAC edition using this feed using any podcatching software. You can also download the podcast in ogg format.

If you like the music we use, please visit Josh Woodward's site. We use the song Troublemaker for our intro/outro music. I'm sure he'd appreciate your support!

If you have feedback, send it to jarober@gmail.com - or visit us on Facebook - you can subscribe in iTunes using this iTunes enabled feed.. If you enjoy the podcast, pass the word - we would love to have more people hear about Smalltalk!

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[im38.mp3 ( Size: 15522380 )]

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education

Software and Education

July 16, 2011 12:54:27.256

It's taken until now - and the advent of Khan Academy - to see how software can really be used in education. I suspect there will be massive resistance, since the pattern illustrated below blows away the traditional "lecture model" that is used now:

Initially, Thordarson thought Khan Academy would merely be a helpful supplement to her normal instruction. But it quickly become far more than that. She’s now on her way to “flipping” the way her class works. This involves replacing some of her lectures with Khan’s videos, which students can watch at home. Then, in class, they focus on working problem sets. The idea is to invert the normal rhythms of school, so that lectures are viewed on the kids’ own time and homework is done at school. It sounds weird, Thordarson admits, but this flipping makes sense when you think about it. It’s when they’re doing homework that students are really grappling with a subject and are most likely to need someone to talk to. And now Thordarson can tell just when this grappling occurs: Khan Academy provides teachers with a dashboard application that lets her see the instant a student gets stuck.

The funny thing is, any educator who considered this would realize that it makes them invaluable. The students can get the lecture from the internet, but what they can't get there is a walkthrough on a specific problem - the hints and "aha moments" that come from working through a problem together.

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law

Just Kill Patents

July 15, 2011 22:14:11.000

They are now doing more harm than good - notice the patent for "one and two way messaging", applied for in 2005. Seems to me that IRC (at a minimum) is a prior application. The larger point is, patents are now causing harm, not good. They either need massive reform, or they should be eliminated outright.

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gadgets

LTE - a Step Backwards?

July 15, 2011 16:36:19.000

I don't call this progress:

Several companies are hopping on the LTE bandwagon, but it's turning out to be more isolating an experience than we hoped. According to PCMag, a Verizon spokesperson confirmed that its fourth-generation broadband network won't be compatible with other carriers in the US. As it turns out, Big Red and AT&T each own a separate block of 700MHz spectrum with only a fraction of overlap, leaving little room for phones on both networks to mingle with one another. There's not much hope for roaming on MetroPCS or LightSquared, either, as their waves of LTE run at 1700MHz and 1500MHz, respectively. This smattering of frequencies means it'll be near impossible to get roam on other companies' 4G networks nationally. What's worse, the ITU has approved twelve bands for LTE use around the world, so don't count on a wide selection of global devices -- and you thought sorting through international 3G was bad, didn't you? We're still a long way from learning our LTE roaming fate, but it appears the largest carrier in the US won't make the journey any easier on us.

Fortunately, most of these devices will keep their 3g radios (at least in the short term), and they'll roam at that level. Even there though, your Verizon phone (if you are on their network) is a brick overseas - and it looks like it'll stay that way. This is not the mobile future most of us were joping for...

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smalltalk

GemStone/S 64 Bit 3.0 Released

July 15, 2011 12:13:07.846

Spotted in Programming Gems (on GemStone)

VMware vFabric GemStone/S  3.0.0 is now live on vmware.com.

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st4u

ST 4U 107: Using StOMP for Serialization

July 15, 2011 12:03:48.536

Today's Smalltalk 4 You looks at StOMP, an object serializer for Smalltalk that works across Pharo, Squeak, VisualWorks, and VA Smalltalk. If you have trouble viewing it here in the browser, you can also navigate directly to YouTube. For more information on StOMP, visit the website. To watch now, click on the image below:

StOMP

If you have trouble viewing that directly, you can click here to download the video directly. If you need the video in a Windows Media format, then download that here.

You can also watch it on YouTube:

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jobs

Looking for a Smalltalker

July 15, 2011 11:16:10.391

The place I work is looking for an experienced Smalltalk hand - we use VisualWorks 7.6, but we plan to migrate up to the latest Cincom release later this year. It's a long term project, based out of Dallas Texas. Interested? Contact me, and I'll put you in touch with the right people.

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copyright

When Everyone is a Criminal...

July 15, 2011 10:32:05.998

When everyone is a criminal, the net effect is that no one is. Consider France's 3 strikes law - in a nation of 65 million people:

The volume of alleged infringement is even higher than earlier reports suggested. More than 18 million complaints have been submitted so far, and Hadopi hasn't been able to keep up. So far, only 470,000 initial warning e-mails have been sent to French Internet users. Only a small fraction of those—about 20,000—have received second notices, and around 10 French Internet users have received their third "strike" and are now facing possible penalties.

Now, imagine that the RIAA or MPAA got what they wanted, a law like that here? How many people would the feds have to employ to keep up?

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smalltalk

Syntax Highlighting your Blog with highlight.js

July 14, 2011 14:39:25.000

Spotted in Objology

Go to Software Maniac's download page. Turn off the languages you're not interested in. Check the checkbox for Smalltalk. And hit the download button. You'll get a new customized highlight.js file for your efforts. You need this customized version because it doesn't support Smalltalk in the stock version.

Then just insert that javascript file into your page, and start using it. If you need directions for Blogger specifically, they're in Travis' post.

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music

Spotify Lands in the US

July 14, 2011 10:11:30.101

The music labels had a (probably transient) fit of sanity, and did a deal letting Spotify launch in the US.

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smalltalk

Charts With Cairo and Smalltalk

July 14, 2011 9:37:46.000

Travis Griggs explains how he created the charts that he posted awhile back - using Cairo.

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js4u

JS 4U 73: Another JQuery Plugin Example

July 14, 2011 7:45:36.826

Javascript 4 U

Today's Javascript 4 You. Today we look at another JQuery plugin example. If you have trouble viewing it here in the browser, you can also navigate directly to YouTube.

Join the Facebook Group to discuss the tutorials. You can view the archives here.

To watch now, click on the image below:

Plugin

If you have trouble viewing that directly, you can click here to download the video directly. If you need the video in a Windows Media format, then download that here.

You can also watch it on YouTube:

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smalltalk

StOMP Ported to VA

July 13, 2011 15:00:23.000

StOMP - an object serializer for network communications - has been ported to VA Smalltalk. Get all the details here.

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st4u

ST 4U 106: Getting Started With WindowBuilder Pro

July 13, 2011 7:56:16.859

Today's Smalltalk 4 You looks at WindowBuilder Pro - one of the two main ways to build a user interface in VA Smalltalk. Today we'll paint a simple user interface for the Counter application we built previously; next time, we'll hook it up to that domain object. If you have trouble viewing it here in the browser, you can also navigate directly to YouTube. To watch now, click on the image below:

WB Pro.

If you have trouble viewing that directly, you can click here to download the video directly. If you need the video in a Windows Media format, then download that here.

You can also watch it on YouTube:


Today we'll start looking at WindowBuilder pro in VA Smalltalk. It's one of two ways to build a UI in VA, the other being the PARTS tool. If you're an experienced Smalltalketr, WB Pro will probably be the best choice for you - it produces Smalltalk code that is easily worked with in the browsers, while PARTS is mostly an environment unto itself. Today we'll take an overview of the tool, building a UI that we'll use with the CounterApp demo - we'll hook the UI and domain model up in the next tutorial.

First, import WB Pro into ENVY - you can see a screencast that goes over how to import a library here - WB pro comes as a separate, loadable component from Instantiations. Once you have that in ENVY, just go to the Load Features tool and bring it in:

Load Features

You should notice a new WindowBuilder menu on the launcher. Select New from that to start a new UI project:

New UI

What you are looking at now is the blank canvas (which will hold your UI. On top are a selection of options for editing and controlling the layout of the widgets you place; on the left is a palette of widgets. It looks smaller than it is, because the left-most list is a category listing of widget types, while the right-most list holds the widgets for the type selected:

Edit the UI

Now you can place widgets. Select a category - We've selected Text Widgets - and then a specific widget type. Then place the widget somewhere on the canvas. In this tutorial, we aren't going to worry about the layout, but you do have full control over that. Double click on the widget you placed to bring up the settable properties:

Set Widget Properties

From the same category of widgets, select the Enhanced Text input field, place it, then double click to get its properties. Note that we can give it an initial value, and an editing type:

Edit Input Field

Do the same for the button, setting just the label - we'll cover callbacks in another tutorial, when we hook this UI up to a domain object. Finally, note that by double clicking on the window you are editing, you can set its properties:

Edit Window Properties

Now you need to save your work. You'll need to specify a class name and an application; pull down Save from the file menu in WB:

Save Your Work

Now set the class and application name:

Class and Application

Now open up a browser, and select your new application. Select All in the protocol pane to see the generated methods. addWidgets is where all of your widgets get defined. You might think its odd that none of these are cached in instance variables, but it turns out (as we'll see in the next tutorial) that grabbing one of these widgets by name is easy - note the name in the second image below:

Browse the New Class

Widget Name

Need more help? There's a screencast for other topics like this which you may want to watch. Questions? Try the "Chat with James" Google gadget over in the sidebar.

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copyright

The No Learning Ever Media Industry

July 12, 2011 16:00:00.000

It looks like the copyright holders in the movie industry are preparing to keep diving down the same rathole that the RIAA went down last decade - the "pound the end users of the product and see if that works" theory. Here's a good summary (read the whole piece though) from Slate:

If the studios were smart they'd go to the mat and create a massive one-stop shop for TV and movies, find a price point they can live with and then set programmers loose to make the thing as easy to use and ubiquitous as possible. Instead they've been wasting their time strong-arming the cable companies to help them on a new crusade against illegal downloaders—an unwieldy process that doesn't address the root problem and won't work.

Where have we heard that before?

I'm not saying that using illegal media is right. And of course it's free—the studios can't do anything about that. But does it have to be easier?

This problem isn't limited to the video industry, of course - back when I was at Cincom, I don't know how many conversations I had that went something like this:

Them: We can get $$$$ from these guys

Me:No, we can get $$ or $0, not $$$$

Them: Trust me, I know what I'm doing

.... and the inevitable result was... $0. That's the path the RIAA took, and it's the one that the MPAA seems bound and determined to follow. Apparently,they think this time is different

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smalltalk

Polycephaly Take 2

July 12, 2011 9:44:57.000

Michael has put up a pretty detailed post on the lessons learned from the initial cut at Polycephaly - and what he and a few other engineers at Cincom have done for take 2:

So, the technical debt on Polycephaly finally reached a turning point when a review was written on the VWNC mailing list and I was resolved to fix the problems. And what luck, I had an engineering trip planned to travel to Ottawa where two of my colleagues live, and then to Victoria (Vancouver Isle.) where another one of my colleagues live. It just so happens that these colleagues could help me and face to face time is invaluable. I present to you Xtreams-Grid, a VisualWorks and ObjectStudio solution for working with multiple images on your local machine and across a network.

Follow the link for lots more details, including the features list.

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js4u

JS 4U 72: An Image Gallery Example

July 12, 2011 8:01:13.712

Javascript 4 U

Today's Javascript 4 You. Today we look at how to use JQuery plugins - something that knowing a little bit about Javascript makes pretty easy. If you have trouble viewing it here in the browser, you can also navigate directly to YouTube.

Join the Facebook Group to discuss the tutorials. You can view the archives here.

To watch now, click on the image below:

Image Gallery

If you have trouble viewing that directly, you can click here to download the video directly. If you need the video in a Windows Media format, then download that here.

You can also watch it on YouTube:

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games

Old World Blues Trailer

July 11, 2011 21:07:27.352

Bethesda has given us a teaser to tide us over until the release date of Old World Blues for Fallout: New Vegas :

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esug11

Early Bird Rates for ESUG 2011

July 11, 2011 19:33:34.081

I won't be able to make it to ESUG this year - I haveto drive my daughter to college that week. For those of you with fewer timing issues, it's getting close to the end of the early bird rates:

You must register by July 18th to get the early-bird price for ESUG 2011 in Edinburgh: £315 for all 5 days, the social event, and the Camp Smalltalk weekend before if you can make that as well (and the Seaside sprint the weekend after if you are on that too).

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privacy

Your Old Phone Leaks

July 11, 2011 8:22:52.000

Data, that is. PC World investigated some used phones at a flea market:

When I got home and charged the phones, I found so much information on both that I could have constructed an intricate portrait of each former owner’s life in the month before the phone left their hands. I had access to bank email, photos of family and friends, the nicknames the owners used for their parents--all for $60 and an afternoon at the flea market.

They also bought phones from various used phone sellers, and the results were interesting. Looks like you need to be very, very careful before you sell your old phone on e-bay...

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st4u

ST 4U 105: Using the Refactoring Browser in VA Smalltalk

July 11, 2011 3:29:59.697

Today's Smalltalk 4 You looks at the refactoring browser - a tool you may know from other Smalltalk dialects, and which is also available for VA Smalltalk. If you have trouble viewing it here in the browser, you can also navigate directly to YouTube. To watch now, click on the image below:

Refactoring Browser.

If you have trouble viewing that directly, you can click here to download the video directly. If you need the video in a Windows Media format, then download that here.

You can also watch it on YouTube:


Today we'll look using another browsing choice for VA Smalltalk - the Refactoring Browser. If you are coming to VA Smalltalk from another dialect, this may be your most comfortable initial choice, as the RB in VA is very similar to the RB in VisualWorks, or the browsers in Squeak and Pharo. To get started, open up the Load Features UI:

Load Features

Scroll down to the Refactoring Browser in the list on the left, move it to the right, and hit Ok:

Load the RB

Now, to compare and contrast, we'll take a look at our CounterApp example in the standard (not Trailblazer) browser, and then flip over to the RB:

Standard Browser

Go back to the Tools menu in the launcher, and select the Refactoring Browser:

Start the RB

Now scroll through the list of applications in the left most pane, and select one - we've selected outr CounterApp example here:

RB

What you are looking at is the more traditional four pane Smalltalk browser, but with all of the functionality that the RB brings with it. We'll explore some of that functionality in a future screencast.

Need more help? There's a screencast for other topics like this which you may want to watch. Questions? Try the "Chat with James" Google gadget over in the sidebar.

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