The Lively Kernel A Self-supporting System on a Web Page

Daniel Ingalls, Krzysztof Palacz, Stephen Uhler, Antero Taivalsaari, Tommi Mikkonen. The Lively Kernel A Self-supporting System on a Web Page. In Robert Hirschfeld, Kim Rose, editors, Self-Sustaining Systems, First Workshop, S3 2008, Potsdam, Germany, May 15-16, 2008, Revised Selected Papers. Volume 5146 of Lecture Notes in Computer Science, pages 31-50, Springer, 2008. [doi]


The Lively Kernel is a complete platform for Web programmingwritten in JavaScriptTM using graphics available in leading browsers. A widget set built from these elements provides a user interface kit, and the widget set is also extensible. A window-based IDE allows users to edit their applications and even the system itself.When a user visits the Lively Kernel page,

the kernel loads and runs with no installation whatsoever. The user can immediately construct new objects or applications and manipulate the environment.

The Lively Kernel is able to save its creations, and even clone itself, onto Web pages. In so doing, it defines a new form of dynamic content on the Web. Moreover, since it can run in today’s browsers, it promises that wherever there is the Internet, there can be authoring of Web content. Beyond its utility, the simplicity and completeness of the Lively Kernel make it a practical benchmark of system complexity, and a flexible laboratory for exploring new approaches to security, simplified graphics, and Web technologies in general.