The awards ceremony for the ESUG 2006 Innovation Awards was held in the main Conference room right before lunch on Wednesday.

This year’s awards saw 9 contestants and 62 voters. The competition was fierce, and the three winners were:

      Plopp, by Impara
      Mondrian, by Tudor Girba and Michael Meyer
      SqSquare, by Kazuki Minamitani, Masashi Umezawa

All the partecipants also received a nice Smalltalk balloon as a gift, and the congratulations of the conference attendants.

The last talk for Wednesday’s morning session was delivered by Marcus and Stef, releasers of Squeak 3.9, and it was a quick recap on what happened in the world of Squeak in the last year. Here are the main points:

  • The new SqueakFoundation is now working. It has 7 board members, and its role is to promote Squeak and coordinate the various Squeak communities
  • The new Squeak Website is now managed by the community (the Squeak Webteam)
  • The Team system is fully operational. Everything in the Squeak community is managed by Teams (3.9 development, Webteam, Tools etc.). Each team delivers a monthly report on its activities.
  • Squeak 1.1 is now the open-source certificed APSL 2.0 license

The new Squeak version 3.9 has reached Gamma stage and will soon be available as a stable release. Its main features:

  • Pragmas
  • Merged back 3.8 Squeakland & Smallland changes
  • A new default look
  • lots of fixes
  • ToolBuilder (UI abstraction)
  • Services framework
  • Changes in event notifications mechanism
  • Lots of new tests
  • New AST
  • Closure compiler
  • Monticello version management
  • SqueakSource
  • the Omnibrowser framework and related tools
  • SqueakMap
  • Shout, eCompletion
  • Refactoring browser now integrated
  • new SUnit browser.
  • Christo: a code coverage browser

There are also a lots of projects going on which are related to Squeak. Stef did a brief presentation of each:

  • Tweak
  • Sophie
  • Croquet
  • Spoon
  • Seaside
  • Exupery, Chronos, Pier, Magma

Marcus and Stef also proposed some lines of action for the next 3.10 release
Lots of talks, few actions

Tudor Girba – Mondrian

6 September, 2006

Mondrian, by Tudor Girba, is simply a visualization tool. The cool thing about it is that it can be used to display graphs of any kind or size (classes with methods, methods invocations). Graph displaying may be obtained dinamically just by scripting the Mondrian engine, without ever manipulating the graphic engine: you just specify the nodes of your graph, how they should be connected, and how they should be laid out. A great tool, with many possible uses.

The first presentation for Wednesday was delivered by James Robertson, who recounted his experiences in building and mantaining Silt, the blog server written in VisualWorks which powers the blogs on the Cincom Smalltalk website.

As the last presentation for Tuesday, Adriaan Van Os talked about optimizing your code. Adriaan started with the basic advices on profiling (“keep your design simple, worry about optimization later”, and “don’t rely on assumptions – use the profiler”). From there, Adriaan added lots of useful tips which are more specific to the optimization of a Smalltalk application. Adriaan has also extended SUnit with some nifty profiling methods.

Carsten Haerle delivered a presentation on a server system for continuously running tests. When the test in an application start to grow in number, it may become cumbersome to coordinate the execution of them suite and the repair of failing test cases. Carsten solutions delivers a highly parallelized test case execution environment and a self service tool for developers to coordinate the repair of test cases.

Michael and Grit from Impara delivered a presentation on how to build end-user oriented application using Squeak. They went into the design principles and the issues that they had to solve in order to build two applications: Plopp, a 3D drawing tool for children, and the Sophie multi-media authoring tool.
Each tool was also demoed live in front of the audience, after having been showed during last night’s Innovation Awards presentations.

The first talk of the Tuesday afternoon session was a Seaside tutorial by Lukas Renggli. In little more than one hour, Lukas has shown the basics to start creating web applications with Seaside. The tutorial used a pre-made Squeak image which may be found on the ESUG 2006 DVD.

For the first time at the ESUG Conferences, there was a Fast Track, which included many short presentations. Anyone with something interesting to show could ask for a slot, even at the last moment.

This year there were five presenters. The first one was the Bob Nemec, Executive Director of STIC (Smalltalk Industry Council), who provided the latest news: three websites (Smalltalk Central, the STIC home site and the newSmalltalk Solutions. Bob also announced the new Smalltalk logo [ | ] (opening bracket, vertical bar, closing bracket).
After Bob, Frederic Pluquet from Belgian university ULB introduced Object History, a system for storing and querying each successive state of an object.
Karsten Kusche and Damien Cassou then showed their Dakar Testing tool, an extension to VisualWorks’ browser and test runner which makes it easier to create SUnit tests for your classes.

Alexandre Bergel talked about Realtalk, a dedicated language to control wireless sensor, based upon Smalltalk.

The last presentation was from Stefaan Denolf from the Dutch company MediaGeniX NG. This is an all-Smalltalk company which produces a software system from managing broadcasts and TV/Radio schedules. Their software, written in VisualWorks, is based upon a Supermodel framework which allows to model uniformly many different subsystems (UI, storage, etc.)

The first Tuesday session started with a presentation by Cincom’s Martin Kobetic, who gave an introduction to Public Key cryptography (RSA, DSA, RH), the applications for the various algorithms and other practical aspects. This talk is the continuation of similar talks presented in the previous Smalltalk Solutions and ESUG conferences.

The abstract may be found on the ESUG website.