[Edu-sig] From Kirby's corner...

kirby urner kirby.urner at gmail.com
Tue Mar 7 07:00:41 CET 2006

For my part, I've been musing on the animals we're seeing:  turtles on
Python.  I'm into monkeys.  And Python's a snake (some say a comedy
troupe, but I say "it ate Monty").

I'm invited to a Shuttleworth Foundation gig in London in April to
brainstorm on a proposed curriculum pipeline in South Africa that'd
start 'em in Logo, move on to Squeak, thence to Python.  Lots of big
names invited, plus me.

Then I notice the Scheme folks might come and wonder if they're like
the zookeepers. because, like, we have all these animals:  {Logo :
turtle, Squeak : mouse, Python : snake}.  Now the Schemers show up,
and plan a circus or something?  Anyway, interesting fantasy.

My current interest is that Parrot avatar Jim Huginin demos in some of
his IronPython previews.  He grabs it out of the Windows .DLLs and
makes it squawk and fly, from the Python command line.  It's a cross
between VPython and Looney Tunes (more flat than 3D).  I think this
stuff has potential, in terms of scripting, in terms of girls even

There's a title on my bookshelf about the computer screen having a lot
in common with the theater stage.  When you file in to a theater, take
your seats in the rows, they hand you a Programme (no coincidence). 
The playwright writes a script.

We need to make numeracy training more literary and vice versa, and I
see computer animation and/or "GUI TV" as a bridge.  But that doesn't
mean losing touch with the command line and doing all drag and drop
programming with icons (although we can do some of that too, ala
GameMaker & Mindstorms).  We'll still use ordinary Python -- just with
different puppets than we might be used to, on the other ends of our


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