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Of course this comment was inevitable. If Smalltalkers really believe their environment is the right way to code, their attitude should not be one of "we did this first, meh" but instead be "here's what we did right, here's what we did wrong. heed the lessons of history and good luck, you are on a mission from God."

I think with the proper care and nurturing, we could be at the beginning of a renaissance where many of the great ideas of the 60s and 70s that have been isolated to a small group of people (who are aging rapidly) are being rediscovered and reimagined by this generation. This is happening in no small part due to Rich Hickey and the Clojure community's unbelievable foresight in developing Clojure and ClojureScript in just the right way that it balances these pure, beautiful ideas with pragmatism in a way that makes them irresistible.

Those who lived through the heyday of Xerox PARC, the AI lab, the lisp machines and Smalltalk should see this as an opportunity to help make sure things don't go off the rails this time. Otherwise, we may end up back here again in 25 years with the C++ and MySQL of the future installed in our cybernetic implants.

I can already point to projects that are invisibly pushing us towards another deep, sticky, next-generation tarpit, and people are diving in because it's not yet recognizable as such. (I won't name names!) Lets try to make it so this time around we truly realize the dreams of computation by encouraging people who are building elegant, beautiful things for the modern era, no matter how much the ideas therein have been tried before.

If Smalltalkers really believe their environment is the right way to code, their attitude should not be one of "we did this first, meh"

That was totally not the spirit in which I meant my post. It's more like, "I told you so!" (My mind works differently, I guess. I present facts that challenge people's model of the world, hoping the curious absorb the information and run with it. Many people seem to take these as some kind of attack.)

Ah, understood. Tone threw me off and it's all too common to see the attitude I outlined above when old ideas are given fresh paint. Apologies for misrepresenting your view.

> Apologies for misrepresenting your view.

Oh please. He even misrepresented his own view.

"I wasn't attacking anyone, I was only letting everybody know they've been told"

The constructive bit of information was "hey cool this uses a lot of the concepts SmallTalk used in the 80s, great to see it getting some traction" instead of "I told you so!".

After a decade of waiting, I think I'm entitled to express a bit of frustration.

Your position is quite contradictory. Do you really think I'd extoll these capabilities for years while mainstream programmers pooh-poohed me, then suddenly change my position to "meh?" "I told you so," seems to be the most sensible response to me.

I didn't quite "live through" those, being too young (mid-30's now) but did buy a lispm and hack on Smalltalk. I do support things like making Smalltalk Git-compatible, declarative, etc. I haven't jumped on the Clojure bandwagon because I lack interest in the JVM, but ClojureScript is great.

FYI: One thing Light Table could pick up / learn is the ability to scale as function set grows, to gain a kind of fractal navigability.

EDIT: I should clarify that I like Clojure quite a bit. It just doesn't speak to the kind of programming I do "in anger" right now. So I learn about it and watch ClojureScript more intently because it speaks to the environment I've chosen for my products/projects.

It seems that Dan Ingalls, the father of Smalltalk, has picked up the baton again, this time using Javascript. Check out Lively Kernel (http://lively-kernel.org/). I saw a live demo at JSConf, it was pretty jaw-dropping stuff, completely in line with the Smalltalk legacy.

Interesting stuff, I'm quite new to programming, could you please recommend some reading materials to get acquainted with these ideas?

As a newbie, I'd like to educate myself so I can contribute to the "right" projects for this time and learn to avoid the tarpits.

check out udacity, coursera and khanacadamy.

why not name names? seems like it could be informative.

Not in this thread. This is Light Table's moment to shine, don't want to clog it up with such a derail.

Then do it somewhere else and point here, please? Another comment mentioned version control, which is a very important thing to get right, and I don't know how I'd diff two Self workspaces, for example...

What other sticking points are there?

Squeak smalltalk (among others I'm sure) has had version control for quite a while in the form of http://wiresong.ca/monticello/

Not old enough to have lived through what you said, but old enough to have noticed the ripples of "what could have been". Plan9. Lisp Machines. etc. So I'm also looking forward to your much-needed show-and-tell post!

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