Announcing PythonTurtle

cool-RR ram.rachum at
Tue Aug 4 14:19:48 CEST 2009

> Hi Ram,
> that's indeed a nice starting point for kids to doing turtle graphics,
> although currently it seems to implement only a very small subset of
> Python's turtle module's capabilities, even less than those of the old
> turtle module (that shipped with Python upto 2.5).

I agree - an undo feature for example would be nice and it's something
I would like to do in a future version. Other than that though, I
don't think having many turtle-functions is so important. I think the
important thing is for the student to build complex things from simple
building blocks.

> Moreover I have to complain that you decided to use different commands
> for the turtle's actions - go instead of forward, turn instead of left
> and right etc. First I think left and right are more intuitive than turn
> as they do not need negative angles as arguments, which might matter for
> young children. Also I cannot see the advantage of cammands like
> visible() or invisible() over showturtle() and hideturtle()
> But second even kids - when learning how to program - will arrive at a
> point where it's no more problem to use an editor like IDLE so they
> could easily switch to Python's turtle module. That would be even easier
> if they had not to learn a new command set.
> Moreover a learning environment like PythonTurtle needs something like
> an editor - at least a simple one - in order to create programs that can
> be run repeatedly. Coding, that's creating programs - not only issuing
> a sequence of cammands interactively.

A text editor would be a good feature for future versions.
Regarding the naming of functions: I named them in the way that seemed
best to me. You seem not to agree, you like the way your functions are
named better, and there's little point in arguing over which
convention is truly better. The convention I chose is the one that
seemed ideal to me.
I did consider naming the functions the same way you did for
consistency, but I decided not to compromise the quality of
PythonTurtle just to be compatible with a module that my users may not
even use.

> It would be certainly a good thing if one had a similar environment
> using Tkinter, preferably also as part of the standard distribution of
> Python accompanying the turtle module. I think it should not be that
> difficult to create a GUI of this sort combining IDLE's shell window,
> its editor and Alas, at the moment I'm too busy with some
> othr work to start a project like this. Perhaps someone else might be
> interested? I'd enjoy to join a team doing it.

I agree that it shouldn't be difficult; The question is whether
someone will step up and do it.

> Finally I'd like to stress, that the aims of PythonTurtle and Python's
> turtle module are quite different - as one could grasp easily by trying
> out the collection of examples at that
> I posted in another posting. Anyway they could very well complement one
> another in some more mature state of development.
> Best regards,
> Gregor

Thank you for your feedback Gregor.

Ram Rachum.

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