I wrote a small bit of code called MethodShopping a little while back which as it turned out had just been done in Ruby a few days earlier! More importantly however is that both the name, MethodFinder, and the inspiration for that other Ruby version, was Smalltalk. Smalltalk had a version who knows how many decades ago?...
My inspiration wasn't Smalltalk, but laziness. I didn't want to have to go pouring over a class' interface in a tedious search for a method. I just wanted to be able to throw the result at a class and have it spit out the right method. Still, I thought, hmm, somethin' to this Smalltalk stuff. (A slight overstatement, at least given my understanding that much of Ruby's object system, classes and methods are already derived from Smalltalk.)
Then I noticed that Rick DeNatale (or is it De Natale?), an old (Your term Rick!) Smalltalker has recently starting blogging, and about Ruby. I'm really stoked that we're getting old Smalltalkers participating. There's a ton of fantastic experience there. What other gems like MethodFinder am I busily reinventing? I'd like to know!
Well, right now I'd like to know what Smalltalkers think of the discussion about collections. What of your experience helps inform the class structure for Array, Hash, etcetera? With all those extra years, there's sure to be a few new (to Ruby) wrinkles.
Similarly, there's Lisp. Way older than Smalltalk again. What has Lisp to contribute? Well, I read the other day about Rails' new method alias_method_chain at http://weblog.rubyonrails.org/2006/4/26/new-in-rails-module-alias_method_chain. And according to Jon Tirsen, who commented therein, alias_method_chain is apparently very much like a Lispy technique which is known as 'around advice' although I'm not sure how it gets that name and haven't encountered it myself.
Having written a bit of Lisp in my time and having declared it my fave language, and now loving the Lispiness of my new fave language, Ruby, I was wondering what could be got from it's drawers too...
Although we don't seem to be getting so much from Lispers, but perhaps they're more curmudgeonly old bastards than I am? Any heavy-duty old Lispers out there?
So, anyone up for some rifling? By that I mean a vaguely organised and much more proactive and unprincipled band of raiders go thieving through every nook and cranny of Smalltalk's (or Lisp's) libraries; or any other room of their houses...
"Bad artists copy. Great artists steal." --- Pablo Picasso