[sapug] Introduction

Chris Foote chris at inetd.com.au
Tue Feb 14 03:28:34 CET 2006

On Tue, 14 Feb 2006, stephen white wrote:

> On 13/02/2006, at 11:29 PM, Chris Foote wrote:
>> On Mon, 13 Feb 2006, Daryl Tester wrote:
>>> I've got some leave coming up soon, and I'm hoping to make a
>>> significant
>>> dent in SICP.  I've had several abortive attempts at it, but 10
>>> minutes
>>> or so here or there doesn't soak into the brain well.
>> hehe.. I bought the book last year and I managed to get to page 43 :-(
> I had that book for two of my subjects (I think I may have been the
> one who recommended it to Daryl?) at Adelaide Uni, and it's
> incredibly dense material. It covers about the same amount per
> paragraph as other books cover per subject, confirming my theory that
> it's used for weeding out students at MIT. It's a first year book
> over there!

I don't know why it's ever touted as being useful for a beginner's course
in computer science.  No doubt the MIT students would agree :-)

>>>> Especially since we already have a Ruby troll on the list. :)
>>> He's harmless provided you don't get him wet or feed him after
>>> midnight.
>> ... or get him started on Python's "list comprehensions" versus Ruby's
> Part of the reason I'm a Ruby Troll is because it was the first time
> I was exposed to the original Smalltalk version of Object Oriented
> Programming. Years of painful miscomprehension induced by the
> abortion of C++ and its legions sloughed off in an instant(iation),
> as the clear shining vision of Alan Kay dawned on my mindscape!

I come from the C world and I never got past using OO for encapsulation
and basic interheritance with C++.  I found that using OO in Python was
so natural that I started to learn new concepts and finally a reason why
OO was considered useful.  It got me interested in programming again,
and I'm looking at moving to a career in software engineering because
of it (it's a shame that Python isn't more widely accepted!).

I suppose learning and using Java/Smalltalk/Ruby might have also had
the same benefits, but I just didn't have the time up my sleeve.

> Firmly into Objective C these days, using Smalltalk as a scripting
> layer on top of compiled Smalltalk with implementation in C.
> Languages go in the strangest directions!

Any reason for using Smalltalk over Ruby ? (i.e. If you progressed from
Ruby to Smalltalk, then there must have been some benefit).  How on
earth did Objective C sneak in there ?

Chris Foote <chris at inetd.com.au>
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