A Conversation with Dan and Allen

I highly recommend this podcast interview with Dan Ingalls and Allen Wirfs-Brock (yep, we’re related) on Microsoft’s Channel 9. Dan was one of the pioneers who coded the first implementation of Smalltalk at Xerox Parc…and gave us overlapping graphics windows, bitblt (that’s pronounced bit-blit) and interpreted self-supporting reflective systems that let creative types tinker with and improve upon systems while they are still running. Although Dan and Allen were involved in dynamic languages back in the early days, they still are powerful innovators and thought leaders. Dan currently works at Sun Labs where he’s brought to life the Lively Kernel. Allen is involved in programming languages at Microsoft. While Allen states that JavaScript isn’t anybody’s favorite language, if you take Dick Gabriel’s approach that worse is better, even though it isn’t a pretty language it can be a platform for innovative programming environments for distributed web-based applications.