Latest: Strongtalk has gone fully Open Source! The virtual-machine source code is now available, as of September, 2006. Previously, the VM was available only as an unsupported binary, preventing serious use of Strongtalk. Now, the sky is the limit!
Strongtalk is a major re-thinking of the Smalltalk-80 programming language and system. While retaining the basic Smalltalk syntax and semantics, it contains a number of significant advances, including:
The Strongtalk system was developed in secret in the mid-90's by a small startup company. Before the Strongtalk system could be released, the company was acquired by Sun Microsystems, Inc. to work on the JavaŽ virtual machine. Development of Strongtalk was halted at that point, so very few people have ever had a chance to see the Strongtalk system in action. This is highly unfortunate, since Smalltalk is still a more elegant and advanced programming language than any existing mainstream programming language, and Strongtalk is by far the fastest implementation of Smalltalk ever.
Fortunately, Sun Microsystems has graciously released Strongtalk as completely free, open-source software. The first release from Sun in 2002 did not include source code for the virtual-machine (which contains the compiler). Only the binary was released, rendering the system unsuitable for any serious use, other than evaluation by researchers. As of September 2006, this has been remedied with the new release, which contains full source.
Strongtalk development was halted before it was fully productized, so considerable work remains to polish-up Strongtalk before it is ready to be used in real-world applications. But with the release of the virtual-machine source code, a whole new world of possibilities has opened up. What will become of Strongtalk? Now, the answer is finally in the community's hands!
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