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ESUG 2013 Focus: How and Where in Glorp Tutorial

Posted on in Categories ESUG, VisualWorks

How and Where in Glorp Tutorial  Niall Ross

Wednesday, September 11, 10:45 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Niall will present examples of how to code some less-obvious queries in Glorp and invite attendees to bring their own examples of things on which they want advice regarding the best ways to code in Glorp. In addition to functional tasks, he will look at performance such as how to code queries from a performance standpoint and/or refactor GLORP using applications for performance. Niall will also look at coding errors to avoid.

Niall will present recent and upcoming Glorp-framework and tool development. Niall will connect to a database, auto-generate a Glorp descriptor system (instance and class) and the domain classes for it in the Smalltalk image, then show Smalltalk queries reading and writing to the database. If time allows, he will then show refactoring (e.g., a legacy database to a better domain model) and demonstrate the new Glorp refactorings as examples of framework-specific refactorings. The examples will either be simple or complex, depending on the audience level of the interested non-Smalltalkers.

Biography: Niall ended his undergraduate career with two intellectual interests: computing and the theory of relativity. A quick check of how much commercial work was available to relativity and gravitation theorists made him decide to do academic research in that field and then seek a commercial job in computing, rather than the other way round.

Niall started working commercially in IT in 1985. Initially he was assigned to designing and implementing software engineering process improvements and only three years later he began significant writing and delivering of commercial software. This experience taught him that intelligent people can nevertheless form foolish ideas about software engineering if they have not worked at the coding coalface of real, large commercial projects. Learning from this, Niall spent the nineties working on software to manage complex, rapidly changing telecom networks. A side effect of this work was that it taught him much about how scale and rate of change affects software.

Early in the nineties he discovered Smalltalk. The more he used it, the more he came to recognize its power in this area. This perception was strengthened when he spent a year delivering a telecoms management system in Java. At the end of the decade, Niall formed his own software company to offer consultancy in meta-data system design, Smalltalk and agile methods. Over the next decade, he worked on a variety of meta-data-driven systems, mostly in the financial domain.

Niall joined the Cincom Smalltalk Engineering team nearly five years ago. His first task was to lead the team that does the weekly Cincom® VisualWorks® builds—an experience he likens to doing brain surgery on yourself every Friday (e.g., “prepare new memory for insertion, remove old memory, uh, I can’t remember what I was going to do next … “). Currently, he leads the Glorp and Database team. He also leads the Custom Refactoring open-source project, which he co-founded, and the SUnit open-source project.

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