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Discussion 1 - Elizabeth Ashley Durham

Elizabeth Ashley Durham

“Smalltalk vs. Java: A Hopefully Objective Comparison”

Smalltalk was created before Java and is a purely object-oriented language. It does not supportive any primitives as Java does. In Squeak, everything is an object, and every object has a class. While Java is considered an object-oriented language, it does not stick as strictly to this model like Smalltalk does.

Smalltalk is also very “pokeable” – every object can inspect itself. Java does not provide this reflection. However, Sun provides a detailed API that is very helpful in Java programming.

Smalltalk has a “clean” syntax – it reads very much like the English language does. Java’s syntax is similar to that of C and C++. It is more technical and does not flow as well.

Blake O’Hare points out another feature that Smalltalk supports in his discussion. Smalltalk supports multiple inheritance and allows subclasses “to act like their superclasses without fear of errors.” Java allows only single inheritance and casting is necessary in certain cases when working with super and sub classes.

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