Squeak 4.5 Released!

21 March, 2014


From Chris Muller:

So!  Let it be known!  Squeak 4.5 is released!

Home page is here:  http://www.squeak.org

4.5 release notes are here:  http://wiki.squeak.org/squeak/6193

Excellent Job Everyone!!  Can you tell we are excited!

Janko Mivšek wrote to the squeak-dev mailing list that “we are preparing an application to this year’s Smalltalk Google Summer of Code under the ESUG umbrella, as last year”.

Google Summer of Code is a global program sponsored by Google that offers student developers stipends to write code for various open source software projects. The Smalltalk community has a successful record of participation in the scheme, under the aegis of ESUG in recent years, and our organisers are looking for students and ideas, (and even better, students with ideas) for our entry in this year’s programme.

Janko asks Smalltalkers to “please start thinking about ideas what projects would be nice to have. Also start looking around for students. How to approach the universitites near by you, do you know who to contact there, etc”.

To see last year’s ideas and projects, visit the site for last year’s students. You can find out more at the new Smalltalk GSoC 2011 website: http://gsoc2011.esug.org, and don’t forget to ensure you’re aware of the GSOC timeline.

New tools for Squeak

2 December, 2010

The staff and students at the Hasso Plattner Insitute have set up a new site to share the impressive work they are doing using Squeak. The projects they are showcasing include some gorgeous UI Widgets and a new UI Designer (shown above).

Each project is available at the Institute’s SqueakSource server, and can be loaded using Metacello configurations.  All configurations were tested and run in the current Squeak (Trunk) versions (4.1, 4.2). The site is built using Trac project management software, which provides for issue/bug tracking if you do find any problems.

Many thanks to the Software Architecture Group, led by Prof. Dr. Robert Hirschfeld at the Hasso Plattner Insitute (University of Potsdam), for sharing these great projects.

(Note that Firefox currently gives a warning about the site due to an incomplete certificate chain, but this should be fixed soon).

Good news from Mariano Martinez Peck, one of the key organisers of the joint Smalltalk entry into this year’s Google Summer of Code: the students started work on their projects this week!

Following Google’s decision to focus on fewer organisations last year, ESUG co-ordinated a joint application for projects across all Smalltalk dialects this year, and were so successful in this venture that they got approval for 6 projects. You can find out more about the selected projects at the projects page.

For the last two weeks or so, students have been talking and discussing with their mentors, reading and investigating about the projects, and perhaps getting an early start on their development work. This was in line with the GSoC deadlines that you can read at the ESUG GSoC site and at the GSoC blog.

The organisers have told students to ask in case of problems or questions to their mentors but also to the community through the mailing list, so be prepared to help out with questions and issues that the students may have.

Mariano says “Good luck to all students and enjoy this wonderful opportunity you have. Now we are in the best part of the program!”

Following the successful release of Squeak 4.0, which was the first version of Squeak to be cleaned of all non-open-source code, there was enthusiasm to quickly get the next release out of the door. This was driven by concerns that the long and difficult process of re-licensing and re-writing meant that many areas of the 4.0 release were a long way behind the current state of Squeak.

As a result, there has been a concerted effort to move quickly to release version 4.1, incorporating many bugfixes, thorough test suites, much faster and cleaner code in many areas, the removal of obsolete code, and a much more consistent and clean user interface. It will also offer a much simpler and more robust installation process for new users.

The work on preparing for the 4.1 release is now drawing to a close, but more help is still welcome! You can support the work by downloading the latest release candidate from http://ftp.squeak.org/trunk/ (and possibly the 4.0 sources file) and:

  • ensuring all tests are green,
  • contributing fixes for issues marked as critical for 4.1 on bugs.squeak.org (or any other fixes you’ve been hiding up your sleeves),
  • checking that your packages on SqueakSource and SqueakMap install correctly in the new version,
  • checking that the new Windows installation process works on your configuration,
  • and of course, keeping an eye on the squeak-dev mailing list to ensure that you’re not duplicating work.

We expect a lot of interest in this new release, and want to ensure that we give new users a great first impression of Squeak. If you want to contribute to this work, now’s the time!

Janko and Mariano who are co-ordinating the joint ESUG application to this year’s Google Summer of Code are now looking for students to apply for the thirty-five proposed projects. The process couldn’t be simpler: review the list of projects, and you can register your interest in projects with just one click once you’re registered. You can also contact the project mentors for more information.

Note that this approach allows many students to register for each project, so if you want to improve your chances, make sure the project mentors can see why you would be the best choice for their project by editing your biography, and making sure that your contact information is up to date!

You must register by 9th April, so get cracking!

Any questions, visit the ESUG GSoC website, or contact the admins at esug.gsoc.adm2010@gmail.com.

The Squeak community are working with ESUG to submit a joint entry to this year’s Google Summer of Code but need your help at once!

Squeak participated in GSoC  in 2007 and 2008 but in 2009 Google started to focus on bigger communities, so Squeak developers are working with ESUG this year to put together a joint submission with other groups including open-source projects from all Smalltalk dialects, including Pharo, Smalltalk/X, GNU Smalltalk and Cuis as well as commercial distributions such as VisualWorks, VisualAge, Dolphin and Gemstone. Entries from cross-platform projects like Seaside, AidaWeb, Magma, etc. will also be welcome.

Mariano Martinez Peck will administrate the joint application supported by Janko Mivšek. They need to supply Google with information about ESUG as a mentoring organisation and a list of ideas/projects,  each with a description and a nominated mentor. If their submission get selected by Google they will be told how many projects Google will sponsor — the mentor receives $500 and the student who volunteers to work on the projects will receive $4500.

Due to a late start, they are very near to the first deadline! They have until 12th March 2010 to submit all the information of the mentor organisation and give the list of projects with mentors. So as a matter of urgency they need your projects. They’ve put together a webpage to hold details, so if you have project suggestions, send them a short title and a paragraph (for the moment) explaining the idea. You can also reply to Mariano’s email on most of the key developer mailing lists including the squeak-dev mailing list.

Good mentors are often as hard to come by as good ideas, but often being helpful, being aware of the dates, answering emails, etc. can be more important than the Smalltalk knowledge, so if you’re able to act as a mentor or a back-up, let them know at once!

For some inspiration, you can see the ideas proposed in previous years:
2007: http://wiki.squeak.org/squeak/5936
2008: http://wiki.squeak.org/squeak/6031
2009: http://wiki.squeak.org/squeak/6120