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2004 Summer Tour
In The Press
Veggie Van Gogh
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Here are abstracts of my publications, in alphebetical order by title. This is also available in reverse chronological order, by publication date.
Coders, The Smalltalk Report, V6N4, January 1997.
- People have different skills, but be careful about creating a caste system where senior people do architecture and junior people write code.
As If Progress Mattered, The Smalltalk Report, V6N10, September 1997.
- Users are impatient; let them know you're busy, but do it with a general purpose framework, rather than a special case progress indicator.
Beware The Octopus, The
Smalltalk Report, V5N7, May 1996.
- If your organization has system diagrams with a bunch of circles connected by lines to a central circle, it may not be ready for object thinking.
The Cafeteria Stage, The Smalltalk Report, V6N8, June 1997.
- It isn't always obvious that things are going wrong, but if your team spends a lot of time huddled in the company cafeteria, take it as a warning sign!
A Case for Open Development Environments, The Smalltalk Report, V5N4, January 1996.
- The Smalltalk market is maturing, and Smalltalk vendors envy the relative ease of supporting shrink wrap compilers and libraries. A long tradition of access to Smalltalk source code may be disappearing before our eyes.
The Demo Trap, The Smalltalk Report, V5N6, March/April 1996.
- Smalltalk's legendary productivity is a two-edged sword -- corporate cultures that are used to "GUI is hard" may assume the project is done upon first prototype, or may keep you "churning GUI" without allowing enough time for proper modelling.
Documents on the Web, The Smalltalk Report, V5N8, June 1996.
- Two important principles of design documentation is that it be current and accessible. Getting your documents on the web can help fulfill these principles, if it is seen as a means, rather than an end.
ENVY/QA -- What Is It? (product review), The Smalltalk Report, V6N5, February 1997.
- ENVY/QA provides a powerful combination of quality assurance tools for VisualWorks and IBM Smalltalk.
Exploiting Stability, The Smalltalk Report, V5N2, October 1995.
- Successful team Smalltalk demands that synchronization and coordination take place during periods of maximum stability. Here are some techniques for detecting and making best use of such stability.
Frameworks Are Grown, Not Born, The Smalltalk Report, V6N9, July/August 1997.
- Most frameworks in common use have evolved into usefulness over a long time period. Most frameworks that are built by volition by large groups, to be used by decree, end up in the dustbin.
How Does Smalltalk Scale? (slides), panel presentation at Smalltalk Solutions '95, February 1995.
- This panel, moderated by Ken Auer of Knowledge Systems Corporation, discussed panelists' experiences with large Smalltalk systems. Ken asked us each to prepare to answer the three questions that are the titles of my slides.
- This has 5 large graphics, and may take a long time to view over a slow modem!
- You can also download this presentation as a 46kB Adobe Acrobat 3.0 file. If you don't have Acrobat, you can download it for free from Adobe, for Mac, Windows, or UNIX.
It Depends on the Context, The Smalltalk Report, V6N7, May 1997.
- When you can't seem to get all the information you need to make a method work, it may seem like the method needs to behave differently "depending on the context." This is Smalltalk -- you have the Context!
Keeping Good People, The Smalltalk Report, V6N6, March/April 1997.
- Skilled people are your most valuable resource. Most people are fairly loyal when treated fairly, but once they've decided to look around, it's already too late.
Managing Modifications, The Smalltalk Report, V4N9, July-August 1995.
- Any project of moderate complexity will at some point need to change the vendor's Smalltalk code. This can be painful, especially when the vendor releases a new version. Here's some techniques for managing base image changes.
Managing Project Documents 1, The Smalltalk Report, V4N8, June 1995.
- As Smalltalk projects scale, the need for formal project documentation increases. Here are some principles and guidelines for producing, maintaining, and using project documentation in Smalltalk.
Managing Project Documents 2, The Smalltalk Report, V4N1, September 1995.
- Formal project documentation is a fact of life in larger projects. Here are some ideas and code for implementing a hypertext like literate programming environment for maintaining Smalltalk project documentation.
Mentoring, The Smalltalk Report, October 1996.
- Not all Smalltalk gurus are cut out to be mentors. And not every team member wants to be mentored. Here are ideas about how to make the most of mentors.
Object Technology's ENVY/Developer (product review), The Smalltalk Report, September-October 1992.
- If you have between roughly four and forty Smalltalk developers on a single project, you can benefit from Envy. The larger the team, the greater the benefit. As the project leader of a successful commercial product that used embedded Smalltalk and about two dozen developers put it, "We could not have done it without Envy!"
OOPSLA '95 Workshop Report on Testing Smalltalk Applications, Addendum to the OOPSLA '95 Proceedings.
- Many Smalltalk testing problems are similar to problems in testing any software system, while others appear to be unique to Smalltalk. The lack of literature on the subject motivated the organization of this seminal event; this is the organizer's report.
The Overselling of Object Technology, Object Magazine, September-October 1992.
- To succeed with any new technology, you must be prepared to surrender old assumptions -- object technology is no different. Those who, for various reasons, wish to avoid the promise of object technology can easily do so by getting trapped by these pitfalls. Those who succeed with object technology do so by viewing it as an opportunity to change old biases, as stated in these principles.
Shootout at the Mac Corral 1 (product review), The Smalltalk Report, November-December 1993.
- This article explores an exciting (though vexing) newcomer to the Smalltalk world, SmalltalkAgents, from Quasar Knowledge Systems.
Shootout at the Mac Corral 2 (product review), The Smalltalk Report, January 1993.
- Digitalk's Smalltalk/V Mac version 2.0 is an ambitious upgrade to version 1.2, and is a bargain, even at the full list price. Those with ongoing ST/V Mac projects should not hesitate to port to it. However, those considering new development need to ask a number of questions before settling on ST/V.
SmallDoc Web Serving, The Smalltalk Report, September 1996.
- Maintaining your documentation in your code repository, combined with a general-purpose TCP/IP server framework, results in open documentation throughout your organization.
Smalltalk as an Internet Server, The Smalltalk Report, August 1996.
- Mainframes and terminals are tired, client-server is wired. With a simple TCP-based server framework, you can concentrate on the service you provide, without getting bogged down in server details.
Smalltalk In The Large (tutorial), tutorial presented at Smalltalk Solutions '95 conference, February 1995.
- As Smalltalk projects grow, they tend to hit the "Smalltalk productivity wall" -- the point at which added resource does not contribute proportionately to project progress. This can happen at any point between three to six or more developers. This tutorial defines the problem, surveys available products, and provides generic and customized practical solutions, ranging from simple code management techniques to advanced use of ENVY/Developer. This tutorial is for experienced Smalltalk developers, project leaders, integrators, and managers who have hit (or envision hitting) the "Smalltalk productivity wall".
- This presentation has 72 slides that run about 50kb each, and is not recommended for those with slow modems and little patience!
- You can also download this presentation as a 749kB Adobe Acrobat 3.0 file. If you don't have Acrobat, you can download it for free from Adobe, for Mac, Windows, or UNIX.
Smalltalk User Groups, The Smalltalk Report, V6N11, October 1997 (scheduled).
- We surveyed as many Smalltalk User Groups as we could find to determine the current state of these grass-roots Smalltalk advocates. The results are very heartening.
Smalltalk With Style (book review), The Smalltalk Report, V5N3, November-December 1995
- Every group doing Smalltalk needs a copy of this book. Beginning Smalltalkers should read it cover to cover.
"Special" Team Members,The Smalltalk Report, V5N5, February 1996.
- Creative people can be a mixed blessing; their insight often comes wrapped in a demanding personality. Through its enhanced productivity, Smalltalk amplifies both the advantages and disadvantages of team members. Here are some coping strategies for some of these "special" people.
A Taste of Smalltalk: Object Oriented Programming From The Bottom Up, The Micro Technical Journal: Micro Cornucopia, November-December, 1988.
- An overview of the basic features of Smalltalk.