[Squeakland] Help needed on reply about squeak

Brad Fuller brad at sonaural.com
Mon Dec 11 09:39:53 PST 2006

Alan Kay wrote:
> Hi --
> We could use lots more documentation in lots more languages most 
> certainly. It would be nice to have all the writing systems of the world 
> available and usable (the OLPC machine will probably force us to do that).

I don't know much about Unicode and the multi-language support in 
squeak. I was hoping that someone knowledgeable in this area could give 
me a link or clue as to where to look so I could prepare a proper 
response to his concerns. Especially if someone has a Hebrew version.

> I think he missed the book "Powerful Ideas in the Classroom" which would 
> give him a start with his daughter (and for himself). Etoys is not at 
> all about widgets, just the opposite. He also seems to have missed the 
> tutorials that are on the website.

I'll point to the tutorials on squeakland and also to the book (which I 
think is a great start for teachers.)

> I don't understand the comment, "squares aren't resizable".

I assumed he was speaking of a morphic object and I was going to point 
him to the use of halos.

Alan has a reply in Nov to Offray Cárdenas, of which excerpts will be 
helpful. I'm not an educator so any other assistance would much obliged .

Thanks for your help.


> He should be encouraged to try a little harder.
> Cheers,
> Alan
> At 07:39 AM 12/11/2006, Brad Fuller wrote:
>> I received a reply on another mailing list from a person who appears to
>> have installed and briefly tried squeak, but had some negative comments.
>> I was wondering if others here could comment on his reply about squeak
>> and I'll condense a msg to him and send it out to the mailing list.
>> The original msg was a request (from someone else) asking about audio
>> software for children - the thread also included general software for
>> children.
>> Here's his short msg:
>> ===
>> Just installed it. A very creative but frustrating package. As with too
>> many of these things, one must be able to read and that in English (or a
>> few European languages?). Fine print abounds in what at first looks like
>> a very sparse UI.
>> The program abounds with objects and widgets. Some very creative and
>> versatile, others frustratingly crude. Graphic objects like squares
>> cannot be resized (nothing stops one from reprogramming them and then
>> dutifully uploading the scalable versions for others to enjoy--smalltalk
>> was once the rage.)
>> Smalltalk 80 is, well, 26 years old. Before Unicode so is incompatable
>> with mutlingual keyboard choices. No Hebrew for my daughter, not in UI
>> and cannot type it in to text objects either. Truetype fonts (newer than
>> smalltalk80) are beatutiful but they are also Unicode based nowadays.
>> I think most kids would enjoy trying various widgets but run out of
>> patience doing anything more with them. Most adults would as well.

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