Sunday, June 21, 2009


Why Smalltalk is deprecated in the minds of IT professionals...

Many dinosaurs within IT have a romantic infatuation with Smalltalk and still refuse to acknowledge that the marketplace has declared this language the stepchild...

When Smalltalk was introduced, it was too far ahead of its time in terms of what kind of hardware it really needed. Analogous to BSD, Smalltalk made many of the same fatal mistakes. In 1995, when Java was released to great fanfare, one of the primary Smalltalk vendors (ParcPlace) was busy merging with another (Digitalk), and that merger ended up being more of a knife fight.

Other challenges include the almost forced image environment that are freakin huge. Smalltalk has priced itself out of the market and to this day is more expensive on a per-seat basis than other languages. Libraries are not the same between vendors so you suffer from vendor lockin.

As a book author, I can tell you that the classic C book is from K&R, but have no freakin clue as to what it is for Smalltalk. How come no one has thought about incorporating support for user-centric identity into Smalltalk? Can you support Cardspace and/or OpenID?

Ignoring the fact that Smalltalk is the closest commercial language to pure OO and is elegant in this regard, it is simply easier for a newbie developer to learn Java...

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