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Discussion 3 -- David Worsham

While working on M1, I suddenly began encountering a white window of doom (tm). This mean, simply, that every time I tried to run some of my test code, a white, debugger window without any borders or anything would pop up and the VM would freeze. I was forced to restart squeak and lose about 30 minutes worth of work. However, that was not really the problem. The problem was that there was really no informative way for me to figure out what was going wrong. We finally pinned it down to a simple problem: failing to call super initialize in a morph class.
However, my problem is this: Why does the entire VM crash when I do such a thing? It should fail gracefully, not blow up in my face. I am not perfect and I will make such mistakes sometimes. and then, when it does happen, why is it such a pain to pinpoint what was wrong? The stack trace it gave me had absolutely nothing to do with the message that caused the problem.
I eventually "overcame" it by learning that lack of super initialize will cause VM crashes.

Matias Paulez
Like him, I believe that the transition from C-like languages to Smal;ltalk is one of the most difficult aspects of this. Liberal documentation would help SO MUCH with this process.

Travis Shepherd
I agree with Travis. Strongly typed languages have enormous benefits over weakly typed ones. The main ones being: readability, and avoidance of many common programming errors.

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