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Welcome to the VPRI Software Wiki

This site provides downloads of software and supporting materials in each of our areas of interest.


Teaching and learning powerful ideas

Etoys version 4.0

A portion of the work is covered by the Apache 2.0 license and remaining work is covered by The MIT License for Etoys.

Powerful ideas content and how to represent it

Authoring tool for Active Essays (online demo): TileScript Chalkboard

Fundamental new computing technologies

Instructions for downloading and building the FoNC 'Idst/COLA' platform are available here. The project also has its own Wiki.

The FoNC system includes JOHN, a language for knowledge representation and goal-driven computing. The most recent version of this (likely more recent than the one in the FoNC distribution) and extensive documentation are available here.

Other prototypes and projects related to our work

Tamacola is a Scheme like self-hosting language running on Adobe Flash Player and Tamarin VM based on COLA project.

Text Field Spec for LObjects is an active essay that uses rules to specify word wrap of text and a reasonably complete text editor. Download a Squeak image and changes file from To run this you will need a Squeak VM and the file SqueakV3.sources. Almost any Squeak VM will work. The rules are live inside the essay, and you can modify them. The goal is to have a readable essay that is also compact and runable metacode for a complex program.

Jitblt is a modified version of the Pixman library that uses COLA to perform just-in-time compilation for real-time image compositing. It is available at

OMeta/JS is a system for matching and rewriting patterns in JavaScript data structures. It is available at You can also use it directly from your web browser (no installation required) through the OMeta/JS Workspace Wiki.

Mico is an experimental interactive SVG viewer. It is available at

LYSP is a tiny (maybe even pedagogical) Lisp interpreter. It serves as a test bed for a small, precise garbage collector that may be integrated into the COLA object system. It's also my 'hats off' to John McCarthy to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Lisp. It can be downloaded here.

ABCSX is a byte code assembler / dissembler for the Adobe ActionScript Virtual Machine 2. It is used as a back end of COLA/Flash compiler. It is available at

JOHN-COLA is an automated planner and constraint handler program written as a COLA library. Source and links to documentation are here:

ESSQ is an experiment in "executable specifications" for Squeak. Source and documentation links are here: A version for Java is also available.

Gezira is a 2D vector graphics renderer written in the Nile programming language. Source code is available at

Maru is a symbolic expression evaluator that can compile its own implementation language. Source code is available at Maru Source and Piumarta Temporary Location for Maru and there appears to be a branch with some improvements at Maru Fork and another fork if you want to play with it on OSX Maru OSX port

Historical Documents

A repository of historical documents is being constructed at Historical Documents.