Self Handbook v2 for Self 4.4 documentation




Self allows messages to be manipulated as objects when convenient. For example, if an object fails to understand a message, the object is notified of the problem via a message whose arguments include the selector of the message that was not understood. While most objects inherit default behavior for handling this situation (by halting with an error), it is sometimes convenient for an object to handle the situation itself, perhaps by resending the message to some other object. Objects that do this are called transparent forwarders. An example is given in interceptor.

A string has the basic ability to use itself as a message selector using the messages sendTo: (normal message sends), resendTo: (resends), or sendTo:DelegatingTo: (delegated sends). Each of these messages has a number of variations based on the number of arguments the message has. For example, one would used sendTo:With:With: to send a message with at:Put: as the selector and two arguments:

'at:Put:' sendTo: aDict With: k With: v


Primitives such as _Print cannot be sent in the current system.

A selector, receiver, delegatee, methodHolder, and arguments can be bundled together in a message object. The message gets sent when the message object receives the send message. Message objects are used to describe delayed actions, such as the actions that should occur just before or after a snapshot is read. They are also used as an argument to new process creation (you can create a new process to execute the message by sending it fork).

Modules: sending, message, selector, interceptor