[OT] If programming languages were religions...

Randall Reetz randall at randallreetz.com
Mon Dec 22 12:06:35 EST 2008


Exactly.

-----Original Message-----
From: "Richard Gaskin" <ambassador at fourthworld.com>
To: "How to use Revolution" <use-revolution at lists.runrev.com>
Sent: 12/22/2008 8:22 AM
Subject: Re: [OT] If programming languages were religions...

I'm not sure if it helps or hinders the conversation to note that, to
the best of my knowledge, the term "xTalk" was coined by none other than
Scott Raney, inventor of MetaCard.

At the time, HyperTalkers preferred the term "HyperTalk", and
SuperTalkers preferred "SuperTalk", but Dr. Raney showed the generosity
to bring into common usage a term which encompasses them all.

In the mid-90s he created the xTalk mailing list, a discusssion forum
whose aim was to provide a venue for the various xTalk vendors to
standardize syntax additions.  This is not unlike the talks that had
once been proposed by Charlie Jackson (Silicon Beach Software, publisher
of SuperCard at the time) and Jean Louis Gassee (Apple VP of technology
at the time) to standardize what were then called "HyperTalk dialects".

With both the xTalk list and the earlier Silicon Beach talks, when it
actually came time to start work Apple refused to participate.

In fact, with the xTalk list pretty much every vendor refused to
participate except Doug Simons of Thoughtful Software, inventor of
SenseTalk, and Dr. Raney himself.  All were sent invitations; only one
showed up at the party.

I think it speaks well of the audience for these tools that the word
"xTalk" has caught on: it seems the users of these tools have a broader
vision for what the future can be than their old vendors did; the users 
are still with us even when the vendor is not.

--
  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World
  Revolution training and consulting: http://www.fourthworld.com
  Webzine for Rev developers: http://www.revjournal.com


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