John O’Keefe (Principal Smalltalk Architect at Instantiations) gave an updated version of his talk on VA Smalltalk Version 8, introducing the new features and major bug fixes for the upcoming version 8 of VA Smalltalk.
Most important here is surely the integration of the Seaside web development framework into VA Smalltalk. Instantiations tried both Version 2.8 and 2.9 for porting to VAST.
They gave up on 2.8 in favor of 2.9 because this version is much easier to port. VAST will ship with a snapshot release of 2.9 if it’s not finished when VAST 8 is released. Once Seaside 2.9 is finished, there will be an update for VAST. Instantiatiosn will initially ship Seaside and Seaside-Scriptaculous for Ajax stuff. Other frameworks and tools might follow later or are likey to be ported by the Smalltalk community.
Also a very nice feature will be much improved Class Browsers, that pretty much resemble the state of affairs in other Smalltalk implementations. The Browsers will feature tabbed panes and sortable lists and look friendlier.
V8 will be the first release in a row of some over which the features and menus of several browsers and tools will be consolidated. This will be an ongoing process for several releases.
The product documentation will be prettier, searchable locally as well as on their site, and on the site there will be inter-release updates of the docs. The documentation will also be improved content-wise.
He also showed the current plans for Versions after V8.
- An official port of GLORP, an open-source object-relational mapping framework
- Improved installation procedures for both Windows Vista and Unix
- New and improved widgets
- Web Services tools like an XML editor, WSDL tooling etc.
- Consolidation of tools and browsers will continue
You can download his presentation here.