World, Meet Smalltalk

In August 1981, Byte magazine introduced Smalltalk to the world. This was a big job. Today, concepts such as object-oriented programming or interacting with windows on a screen using a mouse are well-known, but were completely new then. Besides describing the technical aspects of Smalltalk, Byte needed to reveal the philosophy and goals that led to Smalltalk in order to explain why such a system was even desirable. Thus, they devoted the bulk of a 480-page issue to this task, with thirteen Smalltalk-related articles written by the designers, implementers, and very early users of the system. In this talk we’ll examine this pivotal document from Smalltalk’s history and its effects on the life of the presenter, finding points worth remembering and good advice that is too often unheeded even today.