[Pharo-users] Thanks for Pharo

Ben Coman btc at openinworld.com
Sun Oct 18 12:51:26 EDT 2015

Thanks very much for your thoughts Jimmie.  Day to day, its easy to
take for granted what we have.

On Sat, Oct 17, 2015 at 6:14 AM, Jimmie Houchin <jlhouchin at gmail.com> wrote:
> Sometimes conversations revolve around perceived deficiencies in Pharo. What
> Pharo is missing. Or what Pharo doesn't do as well as my previous language,
> my favorite language, my other language, etc... These conversations are
> necessary to understand where Pharo is and to provide understanding on where
> Pharo needs some work.
> However, not enough gets said sometimes for all the goodness Pharo already
> provides and thanks to all of those who have contributed over the years to
> Smalltalk/Pharo.
> I know sometimes we get stuck in the minutiae and lose the big picture.
> I just want to say thanks to all that have contributed to Pharo in big and
> small way. Thank you.
> A special thanks to Stef, Marcus and company who have been working hard on
> this all the way back when it was still Squeak. Who had a vision for a
> clean, empowering, business ready, vision fulfilling Smalltalk inspired tool
> we call Pharo. Thanks.

Stef's "Pharo Vision" [1] document was a big part of what drew me to
Pharo.  Not necessarily what was in it, but more just that there was
such a vision.

[1] https://gforge.inria.fr/frs/download.php/30434/PharoVision.pdf

> And a thanks to Eliot and all who contribute on the VM side of things.
> Enabling us to have a nicely performing and stable vm to run the Pharo
> image.
> I want to take time to appreciate some things in Pharo that make us
> appreciate having a tool like Pharo and which distinguishes itself from
> other languages and environments. I think these things either distinguish
> themselves either in the relative uniqueness or in quality of their
> implementation. They are not necessarily distinguishing from other
> Smalltalks but from other non-Smalltalk languages.
> Superior persistent live object environment.
> This is the game changer and affects and enables all other benefits.
> IDE, debugging and refactoring, all live, all the time.

The debugger (within a live environment) does it for me.  Its what
make using Pharo fun.

> Because of the truly persistent live environment, there is no concept of
> shutdown, restart. We only know hibernate and resume. This is to use OS
> terms. For me this is an amazing boost to productivity. I can at any time
> save my image. Even close my saved image and resume exactly where I stopped.
> At any time, on any supported  OS, on any machine. Powerful.
> There truly is no edit, compile, run cycle similar to other languages, even
> dynamically typed languages with REPLs.

I view that we do have an edit/compile/run loop, its just really tight loop!
I recently had a passing thought we could market Pharo as REPL+.

In addition:

The ability for the system (and community culture) to evolve a live
running system.  This is ideal for applications like control systems
for industrial plants running 365x24.  For example an alumina refinery
where kilometers of pipes carry fluids at 800 degree, which would
solidify in the pipes if there was an 8hr power outage, which could
essentially close the plant down permanently so you'd have to walk
away from a billion dollar investment.   Another example might be
space faring robots.  Pharo is not right now at the point where you
might trust it for such an extreme purpose, but the potential is

cheers -ben

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