HPI students to present their VA Smalltalk related Bachelor project today

Today the Bachelor projects of students at the Hasso-Plattner-Institute at the university of Potsdam will publicly present their Bachelor projects.

These projects are aimed at gaining practical experience in cooperation with industrial partners. One of the projects was supervised by John O’Keefe from Instantiations and was aimed at adding a GTK+-Binding to VA Smalltalk in order to modernize the Unix variants of VA Smalltalk. The goals of the project were (among others):

  • Investigating the GTK+ 2.0 APIs and comparing them to the X11 Motif APIs that are currently supported; as well as investigating the concepts and implementation of the VA Smalltalk User Interface class library layering.
    Determining how to map a new graphics framework binding under the existing common interface layer of classes, and accounting for possible architectural changes due to differences between the GTK+ 2.0 application and the X11 Motif application structure.
  • Extending the existing common interface layer to handle GTK+ 2.0 functionality not available in X11 Motif.
  • Determining the feasibility and designing the approach to allow selection of the appropriate graphics framework bindings at image startup time.

You can read more about the project in this PDF document and pictures will be made available online later today.

The students worked on the projects for two semesters and – according to the material that’s public – had high goals and made quite impressive progress.

So, while we can’t expect this to find its way into the VA Smalltalk product very shortly, this shows that Instantiations is both working on improving VA Smalltalk and seeking partnerships in academia.

The public presentation of the Bachelors project’s will take place today from 1:30 pm to 5pm at the HPI in Potsdam.

Alan Kay will talk at Potsdam about “Next steps for qualitatively improving programming”

On July 21st, 2011, the Hasso-Plattner-Institute at the University of Potsdam, Germany, will give Alan Kay its HPI Fellowship Award (german). Kay is known as the father of object oriented programming and Smalltalk and the Dynabook vision and coined a few famous terms:

The best way to predict the future is to invent it

I invented the term “object oriented” and I can tell you I did not have c++ in mind

The computer revolution hasn’t happened yet!

There’s so much more to say about Kay that I don’t even try because I will not do a good job of it. If you don’t know about Kay, start with the Wikipedia article here.

At the event, he will give a talk called “Next steps for qualitatively improving programming”, which will also be recorded and put online after the event.

Venue: Lecture Hall 1, Hasso-Plattner-Institut Potsdam, Germany
Date and time: July 21 (Thu) 2011, 16:00-17:00