[Etoys-notify] [JIRA] Updated: (SQ-150) brainstorm plugin/player without install solutions

jira at immuexa.com jira at immuexa.com
Sun May 31 21:41:37 EDT 2009

     [ http://tracker.immuexa.com/browse/SQ-150?page=all ]

Scott Wallace updated SQ-150:

    Fix Version: community building (june)
                     (was: dormant, residual, historical)

> brainstorm plugin/player without install solutions
> --------------------------------------------------
>          Key: SQ-150
>          URL: http://tracker.immuexa.com/browse/SQ-150
>      Project: squeakland
>         Type: Improvement
>   Components: etoys
>     Reporter: timothy
>      Fix For: community building (june)
>  Attachments: wolfram player.png
> From: Gerhilde Meissl-Egghart <gerhilde.meissl-egghart at chello.at>
> Date: March 7, 2009 2:19:32 PM PST
> Dear great Squeak team!
> Are there any efforts to make Squeak run via the internet - without local client-installation?
> This would make it much easier to use it in schools! For a (potential) individual Squeak-trainer it makes a big differences if s/he has to install and test (and struggle with the administrator for permissions) Squeak on all the machines in the school's lab beforehand or not!
> Just an idea ...
> -- from Alan --
> She's right (and this is really the fault of MS, Apple ++ etc and the SysAdmins and bureaucracy).
> The solutions are
> (a) do it in JavaScript in a browser (we can see the pluses and minuses in the Lively Kernel).
> (b) do it in Java (but not all browsers have Java enabled. However, the Scratch player is in Java (not the authoring system), so Java must be somewhat pervasive still -- this would be a major unpleasant task to do all this way).
> (c) do it in Flash (ActionScript) -- this would work, still be a big task, but might be the best solution for these kinds of projects.
> Problem is that we don't have time right now. And would want to do something better next time anyway.
> I'm presuming that Gerhilde is having similar problems with trying to use Scratch.
> Wish it were easy to do.
> -- from luke gorrie --
> Next time is now!
> It will be great if the STEPS system can easily live inside a host environment like Java and Flash (and other pet platforms like ANSI Forth). And Ian's latest bootstrap ideas sound likely to make this possible.
> (Incidentally - didn't someone already make the SqueakVM run inside the JVM?)
> -- from alan --
> Actually, I have been talking to Tom Molloy (the head SW guy at Adobe -- who used to be at PARC) about doing something with Flash that would have just the effect you suggest. We aren't there yet, but this is definitely a possibility for a real Trojan Horse.
> -- from alan --
> I think that both Google Chrome (and perhaps other browsers) and Flash are putting in (finally, how could they wait so long?) provisions for running executables safely. This would make like a lot easier.
> -- from kathleen --
> Good Morning, 
> I have been reading the lists problems with the various browsers, Safari 4 being the most recent. We at EtoysIllinois have had similar problems with the barriers, competition and fast changing conditions of IE7, Mozilla, and Safari. Projects from our library will sometimes open with 'View this Etoy" and other times must be downloaded first. And other times nothing happens as I have seen on a friend's G4.
> We are always running to keep up with these changes which leads me to ask if there has been any more work done toward developing an Etoys Player. I do not know:
> how hard this is to do
> how expensive to design
> how time consuming to maintain
> nor the other technical problems it brings
> nor if there is a philosophical decision that wants Etoys to give full access to the programming capability from the very beginning.
> I believe we lose people, permanently, who run into barriers just as they find us. Other sites and software make it easy and so should we.
> The Wolfram site http://demonstrations.wolfram.com/topic.html?topic=For+Kids&limit=20 has Demonstrations with a free download of some sort of Mathematica that makes them interactive. 
> There is a section For Kids but even before I downloaded the software, I looked at 50+ examples because there is an option: Watch Web Preview. The previews persuaded me that I wanted the free software so I could play with the controls I could see being used but could not touch without the software. Even with the software I think I am still using just a Player and that I would need Mathematica to create my own demonstrations. See attached a screen print for the three options they offer. 
> These options let people control their entry into the site and software rather than an all or nothing approach. Can we discuss this as an option for Squeakland. EtoysIllinois would follow.

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