Envy implements SCID [was: How clear, and terse can computer code get?] 
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 Envy implements SCID [was: How clear, and terse can computer code get?]

Roedy Green has advocated SCID (Source Code In Database) over file based
storage approaches. Several people have responded that IBM's VisualAge
for Java implements many of the SCID concepts. I'll explain the source
code management system that VAJ is based on, and its Smalltalk origins.
And I'll include the comp.lang.smalltalk newsgroup in this discussion.

IBM's Java is implemented in terms of their VisualAge for Smalltalk. VAS
uses Envy Developer for its source code control, version management, and
team programming environment. Envy Developer was developerd by Object
Technology International (OTI), which was bought out by IBM a few years
ago. Envy is available for other Smalltalk versions such as VisualWorks
from ObjectShare's ParcPlace division. The Smalltalk source code is
stored in a database and is accessed over the network. Its version
management features are robust and feature rich, and its team programming
tools let several programmers work on the same code simultaneously,
rather than the checkout/checkin metaphor. The browsers that come with
this system let you quickly search for and find almost anything you want
online with excellent performance. Examples are all senders of a message,
all implementers, all source code modules containing a string such as
'foo' (this is an extension to Envy, and is slower than most searches),
and browswers that make part or all a class's inheritance hierarchy
visible.

Envy, like Smalltalk itself, supports fast, incremental compilation of
code. It also supports rapid loading and unloading of fine-grained and
coarse-grained modules of the code library, enabling the developer to
replace one module version with another, or to load and package new units
of capability such as performance tuning profilers or DB connectivity
classes in seconds. Smalltalk programmers often develop source code
while inside a debugging session, with the whole runtime context
available for inspection. The de{*filter*} is just an object, as is the
compiler, the stack and other parts of the runtime context (when
debugging), a method, a class, an integer, a boolean and a loop. The
internal simplicity and consistency of this everything-is-an-object
philosophy makes an elegant and powerful environment.

Envy is a superb tool. As it extends its reach from Smalltalk to Java
and perhaps to other languages, developers who have only used file based
source code systems will have a SCID-like alternative to consider. Envy
stores its source code in a single file, which I've seen grow to hundreds
of megabytes in large projects.

Smalltalk vendors offer other SCID-like tools in addition to Envy.



Wed, 18 Jun 1902 08:00:00 GMT  
 
 [ 1 post ] 

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