My 11 YO wants to learn to program

Discussion in 'Programming & Software Development' started by g@z, Apr 3, 2016.

  1. PrawnBoy

    PrawnBoy Member

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    I've got a PDF of uni's intro coding book if you want a copy. Basic stuff and you could pick it up too so you can help out haha.
     
  2. chook

    chook Member

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    System V vs BSD init styles.

    My favourite Linux distro vs whatever piece of shit distro you like ;).

    Ford vs Holden.

    The human need to be superior :).

    There is also a lot of suggestions here for scripting languages and not programming languages. Scripts are interpreted. Programmes are compiled. Slightly purist attitude not really needed for an eleven year old.

    My son (then ten) wanted to get into robotics. I bought him an Arduino bread board set and we played around a bit. I think I jumped too high too fast. He still has the interest and is very STEM oriented but at that age even the simple code was a little too much for him.

    I don't have a lot more to add sorry, just sharing my experience in case it helps.
     
  3. Zee

    Zee Member

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    I remembered reading this thread a year or so ago, dug it up with ye' old search, and I think I'll give this a go. For $20 odd, it's worth a shot, and hopefully it'll be fun for her.

    Z...
     
  4. OP
    OP
    g@z

    g@z Member

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    Sadly, my son didn't get into it and decided he didn't want to code :(

    Regards,
    g@z.
     
  5. Zee

    Zee Member

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    Shame - but at least you gave it a go.

    Z...
     
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  6. chook

    chook Member

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    As long as he found something he does enjoy, that is what is important.

    My son played around with some coding in year 9 and 10 but decided in he wasn't interested in actual coding and more interested in designing the robots. We talked about it and I told him that the knowledge he had gained from trying it out would help him later on if he needed to do some basic PLC type stuff but to do what he found enjoyable.
     
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  7. adelaide_boi

    adelaide_boi New Member

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    For any other parents, or if your son changes his mind...

    I'd recommend to stay away from any languages that don't compile directly to machine code (that's in a learning context, I mean).

    It's extremely satisfying for a beginner to write some code and see their output in ELF or PE machine code. It makes them feel like they've really achieved something. As opposed to writing some code that just feels ephemeral, where there's no real output.

    The interesting thing is, there's been this myth for decades that interpreted languages like Python, etc, are always going to be easy, while native languages are always going to be hard. That age-old myth has turned out to be entirely false.

    Go (a native language) is easy to learn. Rust is fairly easy as well. Even "modern C++" has been catching up in ease of use. So for any other parents, or if your son changes his mind, I'd recommend Go or Rust as a starting point.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2020
  8. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    I don't think the "easy/hard" part has anything to do with the language itself, syntactically speaking. More about how easy it is to get up and running and do the thing you want to do.

    Whether you want to knock about a bit of statistical/business analytics and produce complex visual output and graphs, or product a quick game in a 2D engine, interface quickly with a cloud service provider's API, or a bunch of other things, languages like Python allow a beginner to get closer to something real-world functional more quickly than Go/Rust/C++/C#. Will it be as elegant, as fast, as "correct"? Hell no. But nobody cares, because come tomorrow we've already forgotten about today's lack of correctness.

    I think what a lot of developers forget is that (a) not everyone is a developer, and (b) most people actually find "development" utterly boring. What a lot of people want to do is build a custom thing that solves their particular problem, and not get down and dirty in the science of software development itself. For most folk, the less time developing, the better, because it sucks.

    There's an enormous list of reasons why Go/Rust/C++/C# are fantastic languages for developers to use. And there's pretty much one reason why Python is used far more frequently in the modern world by non-developers than all the rest combined.

    If you're teaching a bunch of uni students or junior developers "Software Development 101", that's a very different story to a business person who wants to automate a thing one time, or an 11 year old kid who wants to make the little cat dance on screen.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2020
  9. adelaide_boi

    adelaide_boi New Member

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    I think it depends on the kid. Some kids don't like toys and want to play with the real thing. I was taught pseudo-languages (like Python) in school and really disliked it because it felt like I was playing with lego instead of tangible reality.

    But back in those days, Go and Rust didn't even exist, C was still just "C with Classes", modern C++ hadn't been invented yet. Things were very different and there wasn't really any other option than Python or a Python-like equivalent.
     
  10. theSeekerr

    theSeekerr Member

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    Um...is it, though? I'd been programming for about 10 years before I ever bothered to view the machine code of something I'd written, and even then only because I was working in a context (embedded software) where reading that output was a useful debugging aid. I don't think most people ever look....
     
  11. waltermitty

    waltermitty Member

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    lol radelaide_boi got that big chad machine code energy

    python 4 soybois and simps
     
  12. waltermitty

    waltermitty Member

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    processor go brrrrr
     
  13. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Oh boy. You're one of them.

    To the OP: don't let your kid turn into this.
     
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