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Karl G

Kids and Programming

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Is it just me, or was it actually easier as a child of the 80's to get into programming than it is for kids these days? BASIC was entwined in the operating system of home computers, and one needed to do some programming to really get the most out of their computer. It was easy to mess around and do simple stuff without a lot of ramping up.

 

Nowadays there are a billion development environment options available, but there isn't the same kind of integration, or need to learn to interact with their devices.

 

One of my boys is interested in the idea of making games, but hasn't found something that holds his attention well enough to learn it. I've thought about teaching him some batari Basic, but this may well also teach some bad programming practices in the process. 🙂 

 

Do any of your kids program? What language/environment/platform?

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I believe kids today create games just as much as they program them. That means you build things in Minecraft etc, you use Super Mario Maker and the rest. Those who want to take it one step further take an online or local course in Scratch or any other visual code building language/environment. Eventually one might start typing in lines of code, but it doesn't seem to be the norm these days in creating beginner games. Some would even say it is easier or more accessible these days to make your own game content without coding since the creator programs these days are more flexible than they used to be.

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Would there be any value in starting to learn programming with something intended for beginners, e.g Logo. Obviously it is not designed to develop games, but it is a chance to learn the basic concepts.

 

In the alternative, is there a modern equivalent to the 1980s Shoot-'Em-Up Construction Kit, Arcade Game Construction Kit, GameMaker, etc.?

 

 

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4 hours ago, jhd said:

In the alternative, is there a modern equivalent to the 1980s Shoot-'Em-Up Construction Kit, Arcade Game Construction Kit, GameMaker, etc.? 

Well... There's Game Maker, since the first version was released in 1999. ;) And ClickTeam Fusion as well, a successor to Klik 'n Play and Games Factory.

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Or Super Mario Maker as I mentioned above. I'm not really in the loop for modern games and creative environments, but have learned to accept that what old geezers like me (40+) once thought was state of the art, nowadays isn't even honored as legacy stuff, just obsolated and irrelevant. Logo was fun in the 80's but as such I don't think it holds up to the 2020's standards for introducing kids to programming.

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You must walk before you can run, & you must crawl before you can walk. Something tells me starting with structured or object-oriented programming is asking too much. So here's links to free BASIC & Logo variants.

 

https://www.thefreecountry.com/compilers/basic.shtml

https://www.thefreecountry.com/compilers/logo.shtml

 

And if you want to be mean:

 

https://www.thefreecountry.com/compilers/cobol.shtml

;)

Edited by pacman000
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