Andreas Raab

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Dr. Andreas Raab
Andreas and Kathleen.jpg
Born (1968-11-24)November 24, 1968
Rostock, East Germany
Died January 14, 2013(2013-01-14)
Berlin, Germany
Citizenship German
Fields Computer science
Institutions Walt Disney Imagineering
Viewpoints Research Institute
HP Labs
SAP Innovation Center
Alma mater University of Magdeburg
Known for Squeak
Croquet Project
Tweak programming environment
Spouse Kathleen Raab
Children Theodor Andreas Raab, born August 7, 2013

Andreas Raab (November 24, 1968 – January 14, 2013) was a German computer scientist who developed new concepts and applications in 3D graphics. Raab was a key contributor to the Squeak platform and the Croquet virtual world project. He was an early and longstanding member of the Squeak Central team headed by Alan Kay, and later an elected member of the Squeak Oversight Board. He authored the initial Windows port of the Squeak virtual machine, and created the Tweak programming environment used in virtual world applications.

Background and education[edit]

Raab attended the University of Magdeburg (Germany) where he graduated in 1994, receiving a Diplom-Informatiker degree (equivalent to MSc in Computer Science) and in 1998 a degree as PhD in Computer Science.[1][2]


Andreas Raab was a key contributor and participant in the Squeak community. He was the largest contributor to the code base.[3] Colleagues consider him to have been a brilliant and artistic coder known for his solid design and lack of bugs.[4]

He ported the Squeak virtual machine to Windows while he was a Ph.D. student at Magdeburg University in 1997. The Squeak Central team at Walt Disney Imagineering, led by Alan Kay, was very much impressed with his talent. When Raab graduated, Kay hired him and brought him to California. It didn't take long for him he became a productive member of the core team.[5][6][7][8][9]

In 2001, it became clear that the Etoys architecture in Squeak had reached limits in the capabilities of its Morphic interface infrastructure. Andreas Raab proposed defining a "script process" and providing a default scheduling mechanism that avoids several more general problems.[10][11] The result was a new user interface, proposed to replace the Squeak Morphic user interface in the future. Tweak provides mechanisms of islands, asynchronous messaging, players and costumes, language extensions, projects, and tile scripting.[12] Its underlying object system is class-based, but to users (during programming) it acts like it is prototype-based. Tweak objects are created and run in Tweak project windows. Tweak was used extensively in version 1.0 of the Sophie[13] project under the direction of Robert Stein.

At Alan Kay's Viewpoints Research Institute, Kay and Raab worked with David P. Reed, and David A. Smith, implementing the concepts of David Reed's Ph.D. thesis [14] by creating the first working model of Croquet.[15][16]

In 2007, Smith and Raab started Qwaq, an immersive collaboration company, which further developed the Croquet prototype for business applications, such as simulations for the United States Department of Defense. Qwaq was later renamed to Teleplace and then became 3D Immersive Collaboration Consulting.

In 2009, Raab proposed [17] and implemented [18] a special event-driven version of Squeak VM which does not contain an event loop, but instead acts as a handler for an externally provided queue of events, and returns to the caller once all the events have been processed. Such modification of the VM makes it very convenient for embedding with any other (e. g. another language) runtime. Squeak on Android is just an example of such embedding with Java/Dalvik VM.[19]


External links[edit]


  1. ^ Press release about his dissertation (german):
  2. ^ Giovanni Giorgi (2005), "Squeak Views: an interview with Andreas Raab", The Weekly Squeak No.7: October 2nd - October 8th  (archived at Squeak Wiki)
  3. ^ Göran Krampe (January 2013). "In Memory Of Andreas Raab". 
  4. ^ John McIntosh. "In Memory Of Andreas Raab". 
  5. ^ Ingalls, Dan; Kaehler, Ted; Maloney, John; Wallace, Scott; Kay, Alan (1997), Back to the Future: the story of Squeak, a practical Smalltalk written in itself, ACM SIGPLAN Notices and OOPSLA Proceedings, doi:10.1145/263698.263754, "At the same time, Andreas Raab announced ports of Squeak for Windows 95 and Windows NT." 
  6. ^ "Dan Ingalls on where Squeak is headed". 
  7. ^ Yoshiki Ohshima. "Andreas Raab". 
  8. ^ "Win 32 VM". 
  9. ^ "Squeak Ports". 
  10. ^ Andreas Raab (6 July 2001). "Events, Scripts & Multiple Processes". Retrieved 2009-06-07. 
  11. ^ "tweak". 
  12. ^ Tweak: Whitepapers at the Wayback Machine (archived March 23, 2007)
  13. ^ "Sophie". 
  14. ^ "Naming and synchronization in a decentralized computer system (Reed's thesis, 1978)". 
  15. ^ "Inventing the Future: players". 
  16. ^ "Croquet - a collaboration system architecture". 
  17. ^ "An event driven Squeak VM". 
  18. ^ "Win32 Event VM prototype". 
  19. ^ "Port of the Squeak Smalltalk VM to Android targeting tablet devices".