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Cincom is one of the largest commercial providers of Smalltalk, with twice as many partners and customers than other commercial providers.

Tom Nies

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Smalltalk Digest: March Edition

Smalltalk Digest

Welcome to the March 2020 edition of the Cincom Smalltalk™ Digest.  In this valuable edition, we will talk about the following:


  • A Special Note from Cincom Systems, Inc. Founder, Chairman, & CEO, Thomas M. Nies
  • How Can Implementing the 3X Methodology Lead to Success in Your Business?
  • How Does Cincom Smalltalk Engage with Customers?
  • Working from Home? Have You Checked Out the Cincom Discovery Zone?


  • Looking for Something New while Working from Home?
  • Meeting the Demand for Whisky with Cincom Smalltalk
  • How to Use SQL Server Temporary Tables with Cincom® ObjectStudio® ODBC Wrapper
  • How Can Cincom Smalltalk Be Used with MongoDB?
  • What Is ResponsiveDictionary, and What Can Developers Do with It?
  • What Changes Have Been Made to Upcoming Developer Events?
  • FAQ of the Month: “How can I find tutorials and other guidance for using Cincom Smalltalk?”
  • Popular Product Resources


  • Who Should Use the Academic Personal Use License Version of Cincom Smalltalk?
  • What Academic Institutions Teach Smalltalk Using Cincom Smalltalk?

Snippets for these articles can be found below:


A Special Note from Cincom Systems, Inc. Founder, Chairman, & CEO, Thomas M. Nies

Thomas M. Nies, Chairman & CEO, Cincom

For over 50 years, Cincom and its valued customers have had the outstanding opportunity to share in the experience of mutual organizational success.  At this unprecedented time, we now, unfortunately, share the challenges that come with providing for the continuation of business for our own organizations and that of our customers during this critical COVID-19 Pandemic.  Above all and most importantly, we share the goal of best providing for the health and welfare of our employees and that of our customers.  To respond to that goal, we have globally implemented actions to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on our employees and each of our contacts within our customer’s organizations in accordance with the recommendations and regulations issued by both global and local health and governmental organizations worldwide.

We are, as always, equipped with an infrastructure and online capabilities to handle the support needs of our customers in a digital environment. Both the Cincom Executive Team and Support Team work daily to both assess and take action to respond to the needs of our customers during this rapidly changing, critical health crisis.

We share our very best wishes for the personal health and safety of each individual within our customer’s organizations and for the favorable experience of the successful continuation of business.

Best regards,

Chairman & CEO

How Can Implementing the 3X Methodology Lead to Success in Your Business?

When people are starting a business, expanding their organization or launching a new product idea, they typically start with a business plan.  Business plans help focus their company outlook and give clarity to their purpose. However, creating a business plan can be daunting, and some may not know where to start.  The same goes for direction. People have ideas of building solutions for the market, but some may not know how to narrow the scope to the smartest solution. These types of things are critical for success in business.


For those seeking guidance on building a business plan and finding the smartest solution for a demand in the market, the 3X Methodology is a great place to start.

The 3X Methodology, or “Explore, Expand, Extract,” is a thinking model to better understand and adapt to changing contexts as you take your ideas on a journey down a winning path to success. This is very applicable to a number of business settings because it helps bring direction, focus and alignment. High-level executives as well as product management, developers, people in operations and others can benefit from this methodology. 

To learn more about the 3X Methodology, click here.

How Does Cincom Smalltalk Engage with Customers?


Customer satisfaction is all about giving our valued partners and customers what they need, when they need it. Aligning our product improvements with our customers’ requirements is essential in helping our partners and customers succeed. But, to make this work, we need input!

To gain this valuable feedback and obtain requirements from our partners and customers, the Cincom Smalltalk team often conducts quick, mini surveys. These are short surveys simply designed to obtain specific and timely information about a unique feature or features of our product.

If you are a Cincom Smalltalk customer or partner and did not receive a recent mini survey by email, please contact our Product Team here.

Working from Home? Have You Checked Out the Cincom Discovery Zone?

Maximizing productivity and efficiency is critical right now as companies seek to not only survive our new, shared reality, but also maintain their revenue streams and creatively seek growth opportunities.

As Mr. Nies highlighted above, making our customers and partners successful is our number one priority, and our Services team has decades of experience in discovering and maximizing productivity. Even during this time where many companies are working from home, our Services team can still assist you with your needs. We have the knowledge and creativity to discover opportunities for growth, productivity and added value in your application and business and can do so remotely.

Here are some of the ways we can help you find new potential in your application:

  • Product Upgrades
  • Mentoring
  • Troubleshooting
  • Performance Enhancement
  • Migrations
  • Proof of Concept

Interested?  See more details, and learn how to get started discovering the hidden value waiting to be found here.


Looking for Something New while Working from Home?

Current changes in our world have forced us, as a society, to do things differently than we are used to. For some people, working from home is a very different experience and can lead to more stress than working in the office.  For others, they thrive in this environment and seem to be more productive.

Regardless of the state you find yourself, we are here to give you two awesome opportunities while you work from home.

  1. Try Cincom Smalltalk ─ A great opportunity to try something new!
    The Personal Use License of Cincom Smalltalk makes it easy for someone to learn and become familiar with our technology. The Personal Use License is free for you to use for your own private use. 

    Click here to start exploring Cincom Smalltalk and all that it can do for you.
  2. Buy Cincom Smalltalk ─ A great opportunity to take your idea to the next level and create your own business!
    The REV Program is a valuable investment of $500 that was created to give you a low-cost opportunity to partner with Cincom and receive all the benefits of being a customer. As a Cincom Smalltalk customer, you receive:

    • Access to the full product and all releases for 1 year/12 months
    • Full support for the product during the 1 year/12 months
    • An opportunity to join the Developer Program to get early beta releases of our product to see where we are taking it and comment to help us build out the future of commercial Smalltalk
    • An opportunity to join the Partner Promotion Program to promote your application, help you develop the right markets or find the smartest space to promote what you have been working onInterested? Join the other entrepreneurs like you and get started in this very popular program today! Click here to start your partnership for only $500.

Meeting the Demand for Whisky with Cincom Smalltalk

You might be wondering what role Cincom Smalltalk could possibly play in the whisky industry.  For one whisky shop owner, Cincom Smalltalk has been a powerful force in providing value, simplicity and dependability―essential elements in promoting the success and growth of his business.   

Founded in September of 2012, Dram 242 BV is a family-run whisky shop located in Moorsel, Belgium. The company sells a wide variety of malt and grain whiskys from different countries of origin, as well as marketplace and independent bottles of whisky including single casks and cask strengths.

Over the last four years, Dram 242 BV has experienced a 5% growth in its local whisky market in Belgium. To learn why Dram 242 BV choose Cincom Smalltalk to help grow their business, click here.

How to Use SQL Server Temporary Tables with Cincom ObjectStudio ODBC Wrapper

In SQL Server, temporary tables are created in tempdb.  They are backed by physical disk and are even logged into the transaction log. They act like regular tables in that you can query their data via SELECT queries and modify their data via UPDATE, INSERT and DELETE statements. 

The scope of any local temporary table is the session in which it is created; meaning it is only visible to the current user. Multiple users could create a temp table using the same name (e.g., #aTable), and any queries running simultaneously would not affect one another while the Global temporary tables are visible to all sessions.

In ObjectStudio ODBC wrapper, we use a dedicated session to process an SQL Statement (see method ODBCDatabase>>privateExecSql: vars: template: onError: for example). However, in SQL Server, the temporary tables are only accessible within the session that created them. That is why you get an “Invalid object name” error if you try to query the temporary table in another session.  It also explains why it works if you put multiple statements in one request.

To learn more about using SQL Server temporary tables with Cincom ObjectStudio ODBC Wrapper and see some code examples, click here.

How Can Cincom Smalltalk Be Used with MongoDB?

MongoDB is a popular NoSQL database and claims to have very powerful indexing capabilities. Smalltalk is made from objects, and MongoDB stores and retrieves objects, making a very strong natural resonance between MongoDB and Smalltalk! So, why not use MongoDB as an “object repository” for Smalltalk objects?

Borrowing existing code from the public repository, written by expert Smalltalkers from the community a while back, we tweaked a bit here and there to match the MongoDB API, and set about building an object repository.

Perhaps seeing a few examples of this will inspire someone to use Cincom Smalltalk with MongoDB for their own projects. 

  • To read more about using Cincom Smalltalk with MongoDB and see some coding examples, click here and here.
  • For a look at some unit tests with examples, click here

What Is ResponsiveDictionary, and What Can Developers Do with It?

One of the most successful video series we publish is the Hidden Gems Screencast, a series produced by Arden Thomas, the Cincom Smalltalk Product Manager. Arden created this series for developers who are passionate about their use of Cincom Smalltalk and want to learn more about its productivity and ease of use. This brand-new Hidden Gems shows you how to build and use a “ResponsiveDictionary” type of dictionary/collection.

ResponsiveDictionary allows you to send a key as a message instead of #at: key. ResponsiveDictionary makes use of an interesting “intercept” technique that will be familiar to Smalltalk veterans.

Watch this NEW Hidden Gems screencast below, or click here.

What Changes Have Been Made to Upcoming Developer Events?

In light of the global changes that have occurred recently, and the ever-changing circumstances that accompany it, the upcoming meetups and conferences that we’ve recently promoted have either been cancelled or moved to a later time.  Please adjust your plans and calendars accordingly:

  • March 30-April 3, 2020 — The 35th ACM/SIGAPP Symposium On Applied Computing (Brno, Czech Republic) ─ In-Person Meetings Cancelled, Online Presentations Available (Learn more)
  • April 29-May 1, 2020 — deliver:Agile 2020 (Columbus, Ohio) ─ Currently Postponed to a date in the future that has yet to be determined (Stay updated here)

FAQ of the Month: “How can I find tutorials and other guidance for using Cincom Smalltalk?”

  1. You can find a large selection of tutorials that cover Common Tools, Cincom ObjectStudio and Cincom® VisualWorks® by clicking here.
  2. You can also find the popular Hidden Gems Screencast produced by our Product Manager, Arden Thomas. The purpose of the Hidden Gems Screencast is to give newbies, as well as seasoned developers who use Cincom Smalltalk, some useful abilities of the products that may not be obvious. You can see the Hidden Gems by clicking here.

For other frequently asked questions, visit our FAQs section where we answer “How do I…?” and other questions here.

Popular Product Resources

Maybe you are new to Cincom Smalltalk or just need help finding something specific on our website. We’re taking advantage of the new year and new trends, and you’ll begin to see website updates if you haven’t already. 

Here’s a quick guide to the popular resources we currently have available on our website:


Who Should Use the Academic Personal Use License Version of Cincom Smalltalk?

Our software is free for students and professors to use personally for their studies or class projects, but does require a form to be filled out to receive the link to download it. If you (or another classmate) would like to use our software for personal academic use, we have it available to you. 

To learn about the Cincom Smalltalk Academic Personal Use License (APUL):

What Academic Institutions Teach Smalltalk Using Cincom Smalltalk?

We often talk about our Academic program and the Academic Personal Use License version.  Have you ever wondered which institutions teach Smalltalk using Cincom Smalltalk?  We have a growing list of institutions, universities and colleges.  

Don’t see your school or university on the list? Reach out to the Cincom Smalltalk Product Team here to let us know so your school can be represented.