Sitting here and looking at how forms work in Seaside, it hit me just how much simpler Seaside really is. I've done planty of SSP and Servlet style form handling; it's not complicated, and sure, there are frameworks that do nice things like pull data out of forms and stuff them in specific instance variables of an object. However, you still have to create the form and the servlet. Consider the Seaside equivalent of a form:
renderContentOn: html html form: [html heading: 'Get the Field Set' level: 2. html text: 'Field'. html textInput callback: [:input | field := input]. html break. html submitButton callback: [self save]].
Yes, that's missing style information, and it's a trivial form - but just look at what's there - you can tell exactly what's happening in the form by looking at the code. That's a far cry from the way things work over in the servlet world.
Patrick Logan asks a good question:
Pier may be the best extension of Ward Cunningham's "wiki" concept. And it is built on Magritte, which may be the best self-describing meta application system on... well, on earth.
And Cincom Smalltalk may be the best OO dynamic language system, probably the best such commercial system, and has all the openness that Smalltalk systems have had going back to the early 1980s. In fact CST's lineage goes all the way back. (Why would you use Ruby when you could use Smalltalk???)
Seaside works out of the box now, and we'll be supporting it as of January.
We have some interesting podcasts getting recorded this week:
- I'll be talking to Michael Lucas-Smith, Alan Knight, and Michel Bany about Seaside in CST
- I'll be talking to Martin Kobetic and Tamara Kogan about Opentalk
- We have the Industry Misinterpretations regulars talking to Gemstone, probably about GLASS
So it should be a fun set of podcasts - I'm not sure what schedule I'll be releasing them on, but these are coming up.
Technorati Tags: smalltalk
Another small nit has been fixed - it turns out that the export to Twitter was pushing out relative urls - which meant that the "new blog post" notices were fairly useless. That should be fixed now.
Update: hmm - not so much...
I learned something interesting on the vwnc mailing list this morning - Niall Ross has ported Pier from Squeak to CST - the initial port is in the public store. Cool! Here's the top of the Pier page summary on what Pier is:
Pier is a powerful and extensible implementation of a meta-described content management and Wiki system, written with objects from top to bottom
In their haste to try to break Apple’s well-earned stronghold on the content download market, NBC is starting its own download service. Rather than charge for the downloads, the downloads will contain unskippable commercials, and according to the Times the downloads will “degrade after the seven-day period and be unwatchable.” Jeff Gaspin, president of NBC Universal Television Group, calls this “kind of like Mission Impossible.”
Yeah, I'm dying to replicate those stupid unskippable ads on DVDs (movies that were new 5 years ago!), and then have it be unwatchable after 7 days. Wake me when they grow a brain.
How primitive is the DCA (Washington Reagan)? There's no Wifi (paid or otherwise) - so anyone stuck there who wants to get online has to go old school:
Productive, it's not :)
This morning's hot tip: don't patch your server at 5AM. I realized that the podcast still hadn't been pushed out this morning, so I tried to do that - while also realizing that I had allowed travel time on the assumption that I was heading to the close airport (BWI), when I actually needed to get to the far one (DCA). Thus, a bad patch was applied and I took the server down :)
Obviously, it's back now.
This week we discussed DSLs (Domain Specific Languages), and how Smalltalk already has much of the power people reach for in a DSL. Along the way we talked about the various parsers that have been written for Cincom Smalltalk. As usual, we hit a number of other topics. We also talked about an upcoming position shift involving James and Arden Thomas.
As usual, feel free to send feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org - if you include your question in mp3 format, we'll play it on the air. You can also visit us on iTunes, over at Podcast Alley, or in the Facebook group Industry Misinterpretations.
I'll be in Cincinnati all week, in a planning meeting. I don't know whether I'll have time to get "Smalltalk Daily" out at all during the week - the office isn't a great place to create a screencast with audio, and I don't know that I'll have time in the hotel room to get to it. So - during the upcoming week, you can have a look through the archives - there's now just over a year's worth of material in there :)
Since I relocated the blog server, some of the RSS and Atom feeds have been borked from time to time. I just realized why - it was an undeclared variable issue. Doh! It should be fixed now.
Microsoft is tacitly admitting that the Vista rollout has issues: they are quietly informing OEM's that they can include an XP "downgrade" with no objections from Microsoft. CNet Reports:
While Microsoft is still pushing Vista hard, the company is quietly allowing PC makers to offer a "downgrade" option to buyers that get machines with the new operating system but want to switch to Windows XP.
Now, if Vista were a roaring success, we wouldn't be seeing this kind of thing. I suspect that MS ought to downsize their OS development staff by about 90%, and lock what's left in an off-campus building...
Doc Searls is wondering whether Facebook (et. al.) are the new "broadcast networks" - and whether they suffer from the same weaknesses:
We have the same problem with Facebook today that we've had with broadcast media for the duration: their customers are their advertisers, not their users; and in fact they sell the latter to the former.
Tim Bray on Ruby:
Why are we doing this? Because, in my view, Ruby isn’t finished. It’s a great substrate for Rails, it’s immensely useful for building all sorts of things, but it’s not fast enough . I agree with Avi Bryant’s argument that a language isn’t finished until it’s fast enough to extend itself. Frankly, none of the language enhancements proposed for Ruby 2.0 make my heart go pitter-patter. But give me a Ruby with performance as good as a really good Smalltalk VM, and the space of things for which you need statically-typed languages shrinks to a really uninteresting size.
Of course, you can always try out the really good Smalltalk VM now....
I wonder is that sound I heard earlier today was a vein bursting down at stupid-central (otherwise known as the RIAA) - Amazon has a pretty clear statement on DRM on their "how to rip a CD" page:
Many of our customers have already figured out that one cheap way to get DRM-free MP3 files is to buy them on CD and rip them themselves. Luckily, we offer everyday low prices on many terrific titles to help you stock your portable player. For those of you who haven't yet dabbled in ripping your CDs, we've created this handy ripping guide that takes you through it. It's quite easy, and if you own a portable music player, it's a legal, cost-effective way to fill it up.
On the other hand, Amazon doesn't seem to hate their customers. I can't really say that about the music labels...
On today's Smalltalk Daily, we look at handling Zip files in Cincom Smalltalk
Paolo Bonzini has announced the launch of a new website for GNU Smalltalk.
While we here at Cincom are very fond of Seaside, it's not the only web framework around for Cincom Smalltalk - in fact, it's not the only cross-platform web framework for Smalltalk. The folks behind AidaWeb have fans of their own - one of them, Damir, has started a blog to promote it- it's a cross-Smalltalk dialect web framework. Damir is a newcomer both to Smalltalk and AidaWeb - it's nice to see this kind of enthusiasm. It supports all the web 2.0 goodness you would expect in a modern web platform - and you can get it either from the public store repository, or in the contributed section of our product or NC CDs. You can also head on over to the main AidaWeb site to get the latest news.
I woke up this morning to discover that the migration I did last night - moving the blogs to a new server - had a few lingering issues. A bunch of generated urls were wrong, the RSS feeds were borked.. in general, a mess :)
I've been plugging away at that this morning, and most of the issues are resolved. Comments are still broken, as is the "printer friendly" view. I'm looking at those now
Update: Turns out that comments were broken due to a way too specific set of Apache rewrite rules. It should be good now.
Update2: The feeds have been fixed - the links in them were all messed up this morning.
SCO is going down, and they seem to have no idea why:
In a statement published this week, SCO Group blames the success of Linux and "negative publicity", as causes for its decline -- the company may need to wind up its operations after its copyright case against Novell collapsed, prompting it to file for bankruptcy.
I wonder where that negative publicity could have come from? Perhaps letting the lawyers run PR for SCO didn't work out?
Technorati Tags: law
Well, it required a big assist from one of our engineers - Thanks Pete! - but the blogs are all relocated onto a newer, faster server. The instability of the last couple days should be done with now, fingers crossed :)
The Yankees won again, even with Rivera making it exciting in the 9th - and Boston lost. The Yankees are now only one down in the loss column. Boston's sportswriters have taken note:
Maybe if the Yankees weren't involved, it would be different. Maybe, despite another mind-numbing Red Sox defeat, this one featuring a grand slam surrendered by Jonathan Papelbon in a 6-1 loss to the Blue Jays last night, Sox fans might be more inclined to squirm through a history lesson, one that has nothing to do with the numbers 1, 9, 7, and 8.
There's still a week and half to go, but it's now anyone's crown in the AL East.
James Governor notes the important outcome of the EU court case against MS: if MS can't bundle media player, then a lot of other outfits are going to have issues with the EU as well:
Really- there is no clear set of principles to govern technology bundling, at the EU or the DoJ, which makes life hard for companies and regulators. I got the impression Microsoft would actually like to work with the EU to provide a set of useful usable principles in this area. And you know who will be in the firing line if these principles are in place… other major vendors such as Google, Apple and Qualcomm.
I suspect that a lot of people cheering this decision are going to live to regret it - and a lot sooner than they might expect.
Technorati Tags: management
Yes, we know about the problems the site is having - slow, sometimes inaccessible. We are working on the issue.
Chris Petrilli calls BS on the need for a "powerful" presentation application:
Here’s the thing. PowerPoint sucks. It sucks on a nearly epic scale. The best thing about the first version of Keynote was that it didn’t have 75% of PowerPoint’s functionality. That was a good thing . Most things in PowerPoint are useless at best, and a brain-melting disaster of bullet-point hell. I don’t want lots of clip-art, animations, or dancing paper clips. I don’t want sparkly text.
Recently, I've gone away from using presentations completely - I just give a talk. That way, the audience is actually listening to what I say, rather than reading the slides.
Here's part 2 of the podcast we did on Sunday - this segment was more focused on where we go from here. If you have feedback, send it to email@example.com. You can also check us out on Podcast Alley, iTunes, or over in our Facebook group.
If you have some wild notion that the current copyright regime has anything to do with paying the actual artists, then you need to see this article from Wired. The bottom line - it's all about the members of the RIAA and the MPAA:
Emerging online distribution methods are fueling the dispute, as Hollywood writers demand residual compensation for TV and film content sold through iTunes and other services. Producers want to delay those royalty payments, calling the technologies too new to know how much actual profits they generate.
There's a chuckle - the technologies are "too new" to know whether they generate profits (which is why companies like NBC are playing hardball with Apple, right?). I'm sure Sony, NBC (et. al.) aren't setting aside the revenues from these sources into a rainy day fund. What a complete set of tools.
In looking at the HTTP logs, I know that there are people who scan the download directories for the podcasts. The file name convention we had been using for the first year was:
Where the numbers correspond to month-day-year. I've decided to forgo that for the next year - instead, the new file name convention will be:
Where the numbers correspond to the episode number. There could be a -1 or -2 (etc.) for multi-part episodes. That ought to make tracking the shows by episode number easier :)
John Dvorak nails the "ethics" debate that sometimes crops up between "old" media and "new" media: it's all about reputation:
The public is the police. Things get even more complex as bloggers and new-media publishers arrive with a mix of news, hoaxes, and singular opinion. There are no standard ethics for any of these people, and despite stupid attempts to create a blogger's code of ethics, there never will be one except on a publication-by-publication basis. The holier-than-thou old media thinking will fall by the wayside. In new media publications, ethics are demanded by the readers, not the editors. With open forums, comment threads, and other mechanisms, the modern structure is policed by the public. Old media cannot grasp this concept.
Whether I trust the NY Times or not doesn't have anything to do with their code of ethics - it has to do with how I evaluate their track record over time. Oddly enough, the exact same standard applies to a small publication or blogger: either I rate them as reliable over time or I don't. The whole smokescreen of "layers of editors" and "clouds of ethical standards" is just that: a smokescreen. Either the writers have an agenda or they don't, and - more importantly - either they are honest about that agenda or they aren't. No one reading this blog is going to mistake me for a Java evangelist, for instance :)
His summary drives it home:
It seems very difficult to get a good grip on the changes taking place. What's really changed is that the barrier to entry, regarding newspapers and even television, has fallen away, and anyone can afford to put up a news site or produce a cheap video that gets freely distributed. In other words, the priesthood of the few who could manage to crawl into the sanctity of traditional media is over.
Fifteen years ago, as a product evangelist, I had one option: go to the trade press and analysts, and hope that they didn't mangle my message too much on the way out. Now? I can go for a bigger audience by approaching a well known trade journalist, but I don't have to - and I can also offer corrections to any story that gets posted if I think they are warranted (just as anyone is free to post corrections of me when they see fit). It's a whole different ballgame, and reputation is what drives it.
The Yankees took two of three from Boston (although that third game was certainly a nail biter) - and last night they narrowed the gap to 3 games in the loss column. There are only twelve left, so taking the eastern division is still a long shot - but boy, it would give Boston fans a whole new level of angst if that happened :)
Not only is the NY Times giving up on the paywall - they are opening their archives:
In addition to opening the entire site to all readers, The Times will also make available its archives from 1987 to the present without charge, as well as those from 1851 to 1922, which are in the public domain. There will be charges for some material from the period 1923 to 1986, and some will be free.
I think we can blame the ever expanding period of copyrights for the gap, but this is a good thing - I wonder if they've been reading Doc Searls on this stuff?