languages for learning programming
- Flawed as it is, BASIC remains the classic "language for teaching programming" (especially for kids); several free, full-featured versions are now available (some with source code).
There is a need for a programming language and environment that is suitable for teaching beginners – including children – to program.
Some key features:
- (Ideally) Available pre-installed on all popular OSs; next-best would be availability for free on the internet, in versions pre-compiled for all popular OSs
- BASIC-like in certain ways:
- must have an "interactive" mode, where you type a line and the computer immediately executes your instructions
- must have simple graphics ability readily available (where "readily" can be defined as "you can plot a pixel in a single line of code, where lines which include external libraries count as additional lines of code")
- simple, non-picky syntax (syntax error messages should be informative and on-target, to reduce the learning curve)
This need has been brought up in different contexts and discussed a fair amount; for now, I'm just going to post some links. --Woozle 21:27, 14 September 2006 (EDT)
See also Wikipedia's Educational Programming Languages page, which has a few more choices than mentioned below.
- QuiteBasic: BASIC on the web; created in response to David Brin's "Why Johnny Can't Code" article
- Hackety Hack: tutorial aimed at 13 and up, teaches how to write your own blog software in a handful of minutes
Languages for Kids
- BASIC-256 (formerly KidBASIC), also inspired by "Why Johnny Can't Code"
- references: CS for Kids
- Scratch: animation language. Free downloads for Windows and Mac as of 2008-10-04.
- Squeak Smalltalk
- 2003-10-14 Teaching Kids to Program by Joshua Marin
- 2005-2-20 Teaching My Kids to Program by Don Box
- discussion: lambda the ultimate
- 2005-2-26 It's Down to Scheme or Logo by Don Box
- 2006-09-14 Why Johnny can't code by David Brin
- 2002-08-15 Why Johnny can't program by Dan Bricklin
- Thoughts about the Best Introductory Language by Shlomi Fish: list of fallacies, with a final opinion. Creative Commons license.
- A Very Quick Comparison of Popular Languages for Teaching Computer Programming
- Kid's Programming Language: free, but requires Microsoft Windows
- Phrogram: free version; also a commercial version that supports add-in libraries, requires Microsoft Windows, same team that created Kid's Programming Language
- Commodore 64 emulator (eventually, create Commodore 64 emulators page and link with emulators)