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 Why the 80ies were better for kids

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Mclane

Mclane


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Why the 80ies were better for kids Empty
PostSubject: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyMon Feb 08, 2021 9:16 pm

Whenever you bought a machine, no matter if
Commodore C64 or acorn bbc or electron, or Sinclair zx spectrum, or Thomson or cpc whatever, the machine started BASIC and you were able to Program or tell it what to do with a language that was in eproms on the pcb a instantly There after you switched it on,

Ok these basic versions had slightly differences in complexity and syntax, but overall this differences were only a dialect.

When we kids met each other, no matter which machine somebody had, we were capable to modify it that it fits on our hardware. And we were able to differentiate.
And to enjoy the programs.

Of course you could Boot other apps or languages.
But mainly BASIC was the meta language to begin.

So all children who had such a machine were capable to use this stuff.

What is today ? All machines are blank, without any programming language and you can start all kind of languages.
Or only type on the screen for youtube and watch movies instead of doing programming.

Very different experience if the children want to exchange information.

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TheSelfImprover

TheSelfImprover


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PostSubject: Re: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyMon Feb 08, 2021 9:35 pm

Hmmm... there are some universals: most kids have used Scratch (a higher proportion of them than used BASIC back in the day), and I think that it's a better language than BASIC for beginners. Also, not a "programming language", but you'd be amazed how universal the love of Minecraft is. If you decide to alter the behaviour of an item in the Minecraft world, you'll soon understand what makes the game special: the number of parameters you can change or program for much of what you can see in the Minecraft world is astonishing: Minecraft items have rich behaviour!

But yes - there was a rare time when gathering around the school computer to do some BASIC programming was quite the social event!

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Mclane

Mclane


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PostSubject: Re: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyTue Feb 09, 2021 8:33 am

Yes but if you start a PC or a tablet or a mobile phone it has no language. It has a gui that controls the touch or the windows and the surface. But which language you choose.
Some do Java, some do xyz.
And so it’s difficult for the kids to find similarities or exchange code.
Also it takes until the machine boot.
And until you install the compiler. Or run the code. And see the result.

There is a machine that is on the track of the old Homecomputers:
Color maximite

Here you can see it running.

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TheSelfImprover

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PostSubject: Re: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyTue Feb 09, 2021 9:16 am

Ahhh... nostalgia's not what it used to be!

Have you bought or built one of these devices?

For old times sake, I visited an online BASIC site - link.

Here's my program!

Code:
5 i=1
10 Print "Hello World ", i
20 i = i + 1
30 if i <= 10 then goto 10 endif

I clicked the "execute" button and waited excitedly... and then came the output! Very Happy

Code:
Hello World 1
Hello World 2
Hello World 3
Hello World 4
Hello World 5
Hello World 6
Hello World 7
Hello World 8
Hello World 9
Hello World 10

But maybe it's time to move on to JavaScript - the nearest thing we have right now to a universal scripting language (e.g. you can use it in a browser, in Windows Script Host, in Google Docs etc), and it has a lot of features that make it better than BASIC.
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Mclane

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PostSubject: Re: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyTue Feb 09, 2021 9:32 am

Put such a machine in any school class and I am sure the next generation of programmers will be born.



The simplicity of the device is what makes it usable.
It’s like one of our old Homecomputers.
Only smaller and faster. I wish it would be in a keyboard ...
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Mclane

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PostSubject: Re: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyTue Feb 09, 2021 9:55 pm

Here are some descriptions:

https://geoffg.net/CMM2_Description.html

Code:
 Typically executes programs at 270,000 lines per second.

!!!!

That seems fast enough for chess programming with the interpreter!!
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TheSelfImprover

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PostSubject: Re: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyTue Feb 09, 2021 11:37 pm

Go on - you have my permission!

You can afford it, and it's likely that you'll love it. Now's the time - while you can't go outside except to shop for food. It'll bring more joy for a longer period of time than most other ways of spending the same amount of money.

Who knows - it might even trigger something else in your life: when Steve Jobs dropped out of college and dropped into a calligraphy class, it had no hope of any practical application, but he later said that without that experience, Macs and PCs wouldn't have had the beautiful typefaces that they did (at least not so soon).
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Mclane

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PostSubject: Re: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyWed Feb 10, 2021 7:27 pm

Its not important for me. I find it interesting for kids.
And that you don’t need to boot. You don’t need to worry about OS or GUI, just switch on and begin to program. Not need to compile. Just run and see what happens.

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Mclane

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PostSubject: Re: Why the 80ies were better for kids   Why the 80ies were better for kids EmptyWed Feb 10, 2021 10:02 pm

But there is another dream machine:

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