[self-interest] Lessons learnt from the Self archive

Jecel Assumpcao Jr. jecel at merlintec.com
Wed Jun 15 21:29:33 UTC 2016


just a little historical context:

in the early years most people who wanted to play with Self did not have
access to a Sun workstation and so were limited to reading papers about
it. I was lucky that my local university let me use their machines.

One result was that the papers gave people ideas for their own
languages, of which I think only Io (via NewtonScript) and Javascript
had any impact.

The second thing that happened was that Sun decided to kill all non Java
languages, including Self and Tcl. This coincided with lots of
additional information about Self 4 and its graphical user interface
being released through ECOOP95 talks and workshops. So some people who
couldn't run Self on their own machines tried to make their own versions
from scratch.

In the late 1990s the first attempt at a Linux port happened and Sun
allowed the Mac port to be released. This shifted interest from Self
clones to Self ports.

Note that the current VM implementation in C++ is just one option. Klein
was a Self in Self alternative and it would not be hard to patch the
Squeak Smalltalk VM to host Self, for example.

-- Jecel

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