Digitalk Inc, of Santa Ana California has upgraded its Windows-based Smalltalk/V environment – which forms a part of IBM Corp’s forthcoming VisualAge offering. Until now the software has had 16-bit internals and has run as an interpreted language. The new incarnation is written to the Win32s Application Programming Interface set and is compiler-based. The combined effect of the enhancements is that Smalltalk applications will run up to twice as fast, says the company. In fact Win32s-based applications tend to runs slower on 16-bit Windows than native 16-bit applications, but this will be more than compensated by the switch from interpreter to compiler. Speed improvements will be most marked under Windows NT and the switch will also benefit IBM’s OS/2 VisualAge product – at the initial demonstrations the product crawled along, with IBM explaining that it was using a 16-bit Smalltalk as the base, while the released product would be built on a 32-bit Smalltalk. The new Digitalk Smalltalk boasts 25 major new features, including an event-driven architecture which, the company claims will ease application portability between Windows, Macintosh and OS/2. Smalltalk/V version 2.0 for Win32 costs $1,000 – existing users can upgrade for $300 until the end of the month. The price includes the right to distribute unlimited runtime applications.