[PLUG-TALK] [PLUG] Need an OLD style BASIC

Michael michael at jamhome.us
Mon Dec 18 08:38:04 PST 2017

Tom, I feel your pain.
But, But!, the points of the essay were:

  - it enables children to do fun things quickly
  - it does not abstract away the machine very much
  - it gets them started with a reasonable foundation to apply to 
learning other languages

given those points and constraints - especially the limited projected 
scope of language use - BASIC makes sense.

The essay in no way argues BASIC is a language to be used for general 
purpose tasks.

On 2017-12-17 13:14, Tom wrote:
> Posting to plug-talk in a hope of not to be kicked out of this list ...
> I recognize that this is probably weekend discussion and it might taste
> little better over some/lot-of beer.... so please do not overreact.
> Are we really going to learn nothing from our past and seriously discus
> benefits of old Basic to the humankind? Seriously, are we going to
> glorify torture in the tech too? How about beauty of programming in
> SalesForce, SQL, Xml or Objective C, take your pick!?!
> Is this some sort of prisoner's dilemma - being locked-in for decades
> by a miscarriage of justice, then freed, and a few decades years later
> we long for the good times at the prison?
> Where do I start with the pain of the old Basic - lack of decent
> abstraction support, lack of support for modular design, encapsulation,
> no name spaces to speak of, the data structures, the goto hell,
> absolutely unreadable beyond few hundred lines of code - without
> tractor printer and long corridors .... The only thing about it was
> that it pretty much resembled assembler....
> What more to say - Just imagine that they would write Unix or GNU or
> Linux kernel in it. On the other hand, I'd like to imagine world where
> Windows is written in Basic.
> Grrr... Christmas again
> On Sun, 2017-12-17 at 10:03 -0800, Russell Senior wrote:
>> >
>> > >
>> > > >
>> > > > >
>> > > > > >
>> > > > > > "Michael" == Michael  <michael at jamhome.us> writes:
>> Michael> On 2017-12-17 04:24, Richard Owlett wrote:
>> >
>> > >
>> > > I was able to spend a few hours on the site and following trees
>> > > of
>> > > links. I would suggest <http://basic256.org/whybasic> for
>> > > thoughtful
>> > > reading. I can attest to some of his points from personal
>> > > experience.
>> Michael> That's a great suggestion. The essay does lay out a
>> compelling
>> Michael> argument for BASIC and against the favored language du jour.
>> I got started with BASIC.  I don't think I got more than 5 minutes
>> instruction (and if I did I don't remember any of it), and then I
>> could
>> sit down and type things... like "LIST" and read the source code and
>> figure out what was happening... and then try changing things and see
>> what happens.  I spent an afternoon with a friend at a display
>> counter
>> at JK Gills (a local stationary chain) near what is now Cedar Hills
>> Crossing, typing a BASIC program into a tiny home computer connected
>> to
>> a television set, I think to play hangman.  In college, I was taught
>> Fortran and Pascal and then when my friends said C was cool, I
>> learned C
>> (and thought it was very cool).  And then, later, when another friend
>> said Lisp was cool, I learned Lisp.  Etc, etc.
>> Personal recommendations and the Hands On Imperative have worked out
>> really well.

       Michael Rasmussen, Portland Oregon
     Be Appropriate && Follow Your Curiosity

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