Teaching python (programming) to children

Steve Holden sholden at holdenweb.com
Wed Nov 7 18:59:52 CET 2001

"David Andreas Alderud" <aaldv97 at student.remove-this-part.vxu.se> wrote ...
> Java, C and C++ got there after a while, but they where not to begin with.
> Ada was well documented and with lots of RFC before the actually
> implementation of Ada83. Considering that it took 7 years of design before
> the next version of Ada to be finnished, it started in '88.
> I might be wrong, but I'm not aware of a language that was publicly
> for years before its first implementation, if you know something I don't,
> please enlighten me.

Given what you've said, I guess I'll accept that Ada had a lot of upfront
design - I'm not here simply to disagree! I presume you mean strawman,
stoneman, ironman? OK, but in that case how come there had to be a "next
version"? Clearly all that up-front design didn't produce a perfect
language. How is this different (except perhaps in terms of gestation time)
from other standardised languages?

> Yes, most languages are designed, but not from start to finnish, more like
> version 1.0 and forward, that is not _what I call design_, maybe because
> schooled in software architectures, I don't know.
> Maybe we have different opinions of design, I think of design as in
> architectural design.
Well you surely don't believe that *buildings* are built exactly as they are
conceived? Why else do the construction teams have to supply "as built"
drawings - because they have to modify the building design as construction
progresses, to take into account the practical considerations of the site,
materials, etc.

Software is difficult precisely because it is so malleable, and so a design
can evolve. This is both a good and a bad thing. But none of this really has
to do with suitability as a teaching language, and I still don't see Ada as
any better for teaching purposes than Python.


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