The rantings of a beautiful mind

On life, society, and computer technology.

My Photo
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I live in the Fortress of Solitude. I drive the Silver Beast. My obsession is justice. I used to be a Windows software developer. I retired in 2000 when my stock options helped me achieve financial security.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Smalltalk Rocks!

So if Java is a victory for Smalltalk’s implementation choices, and Ruby is a victory for Smalltalk’s language choices, what do you do if you want both? There’s still only one option: use Smalltalk.

People are often surprised when I tell them which language I choose to work in. But where else I find one as expressive as Ruby, with a VM as sophisticated as Hotspot, an IDE as good as Eclipse or better, and a community with 20 years of experience at using those three pieces as an integrated whole? Frankly, I couldn’t make any other choice with a straight face.

Ruby is currently the hottest programming language on the planet. But people are overlooking a superior alternative. Ruby can be pretty accurately and completely described as a dialect of Smalltalk with Algol-inspired syntax and some scripting-friendly extensions. However, Smalltalk has so many other advantages (sophisticated VM, rich and powerful IDE, English-like syntax) that Ruby looks like a poor cousin. Smalltalk also has a superior alternative to Rails: Seaside. So if you're considering switching to Ruby, I strongly suggest you look at Smalltalk as well.


Post a Comment

<< Home