[Edu-sig] (no subject)

asiegel@eico.com asiegel@eico.com
Fri, 15 Sep 2000 16:15:27 -0500

>>This is the same argument I make for why a 12 year-old could get a great
>>intro to programming using Flash5 or LegoMindstorms.

>Certainly these could be good learning environments.

An essential difference, IMO, being that Python is a real and respected and
fully grown-up programming language.
Not just an "environment".

My take is that for some cross-section of the potential audience, and from a
surprisingly early age,  that's an essential difference and attraction.

To me, its Python or Java (JPython?), at least past elementary school.

Saying which of course just reflects my  own taste and sensibilities to some 
extent - since certainly
alot has been done with Scheme. Just can't see it myself.

And just to re-iterate this sensibilty,  I don't believe manipulating 
(scripting) someone else's
multi-megabyte  graphically sophisticated app is programming in a very 
meaningful sense,
or whether it is or isn't (maybe that its own thread), not the attraction to 
kids one might think.

Why programmers become programmers, it seems to me, is to become capable of 
drawing on a blank slate.

An introduction to programming should communicate that sense of things, IMO.

And yes of course it all becomes matters of degree - and yes we're not talking

0's and 1's down the pipe.

And yes Kirby my response talked past your question, for which I apologize.