Running Smalltalk programs in Flash Player?

Next year, Silverlight’s DLR should be able to run programs written in several languages and Smalltalk was not one of them. Today I ran into a very interesting post by a guy who is writing a Smalltalk compiler for DLR and is thinking about porting it to Flash. It’s a great idea. Flash Player 9 is a fast VM that applies JIT compiler to the byte code produced by Flex or ActionScript 3.0 compilers (does Laszlo generates the code for Flash Player 9 yet?). If someone will offer compilers from other languages that can generate the same byte code, Flash Player will be happy to play it for you. I’m not saying that you’d want to create GUI components with Smalltalk, but having an opportunity to link libraries written in other languages to your Flash application sound very useful and logical to me.
Adobe has no choice but to lead such efforts, if they want to successfully compete with Silverlight 1.1 DLR. So I won’t be surprised to hear such announcements during the next MAX conference.

Disclaimer: these are just my speculations, and I do not have have any insiders’ information that there is something in the works at Adobe.

Yakov Fain

One thought on “Running Smalltalk programs in Flash Player?

  1. Peter Fisk has already done much work in ActionScript 3. Check back through his posts a bit more… it’s amazing.

    (He started the engine in C# for Vista, for eventual porting to the MS browser plugin, but when MS yanked the CLR in Dec and didn’t provide guidance he investigated Flash and found it very rapid to port Smalltalk in. Now that MS has announced a beta CLR plugin he’s giving it another go. Amazing project — he’s writing to an abstraction layer, the same code functionality that we used to write to operating system or hardware.)


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