Found in 4 comments
truncate · 2015-10-22 · Original thread
In my opinion a modern equivalent of messing with programming at school would be Racket. There are couple of awesome books `Realm of Racket`[1] and `How to Design Program`. Realm of Racket introduce programming by writing games. Its actually very easy to write interactive programs with this framework called big-bang. Matthias Felleison recently spoke about it on Strange Loop[3]

Unlike BASIC though, Racket no toy language. It's very powerful and expressive. Its a Scheme dialect btw.

I occasionally spend some time contributing to a Racket-JS compiler called Whalsong. Whatever games you write in Racket using big-bang can run on your browser. Checkout some examples here http://bigbang.ccs.neu.edu/search?q=%23stevelikes

[1] http://www.amazon.com/Realm-Racket-Learn-Program-Game/dp/159...

[2] http://www.ccs.neu.edu/home/matthias/HtDP2e/

[3] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ayoofXuKqMY

baldfat · 2015-10-13 · Original thread
I am a self-taught programmer/hacker and the best thing I ever learned was Racket. http://racket-lang.org/

Here is what got me off the ground. The first unit is learning ML and the second unit was Racket. https://www.youtube.com/user/afigfigueira/playlists?shelf_id...

This is from a Coursera Course that is not being offered right now. It covers a lot of different languages but the Racket and ML parts are a great starting point.

I liked this book - http://www.amazon.com/Realm-Racket-Learn-Program-Game-ebook/...

If that is too simple there always is http://www.amazon.com/How-Design-Programs-Introduction-Progr...

I prefer seeing people code and talk about it so the videos are great.

jarcane · 2015-02-16 · Original thread
The classic systems were worlds ahead of most modern ones in one very important respect: documentation.

The Tandy/Radio Shack books for the Color Computer series (and it's astoundingly good LOGO implementation) were amazingly clear and concisely written with lots of examples, and because in those days even a disk drive wasn't a guarantee, all the examples were written to be hand-typed and experimented with.

There were even books in those days that aimed to teach kids machine language! [1]

That said, I think Djikstra and Felleisen may be slightly right about the long-term usefulness of old-fashioned BASIC and LOGO for learning, but there are a few books in modern languages that come close.

Hello World![2] was explicitly written to hearken back to those old manuals, by a father aiming to teach his 12-yo son programming with Python.

Land of Lisp[3] and Realm of Racket[4] also call to mind those old books as well, though they're targeting a bit older audience and have their quirks (LoL is a bit in-love with huge nested trees and a-lists in the examples, and Realm of Racket tends to gloss over a lot of the examples and expects you to just read the sample code rather than walking you through the process completely).

The Little Schemer[5] is also a fantastic little book that takes on the form almost of a set of brain-teasers, and teaches recursive thinking entirely by example and in methodical detail. The later chapters can be a bit stumpy, but if you go through the book step by step in regular sessions it builds on itself pretty well.

All of these are aiming at around the 12+ age range though, I don't think there's much out there anymore for anything younger.

[1] http://boingboing.net/2013/05/16/1983s-wonderful-introducti....

[2] http://www.amazon.com/Hello-World-Computer-Programming-Begin...

[3] http://www.amazon.com/Land-Lisp-Learn-Program-Game/dp/159327...

[4] http://www.amazon.com/Realm-Racket-Learn-Program-Game/dp/159...

[5] http://www.amazon.com/Little-Schemer-Daniel-P-Friedman/dp/02...

Tortoise · 2013-06-19 · Original thread
Amazon.ca has the book for CDN$ 26.43 (free shipping). http://www.amazon.ca/Realm-Racket-Learn-Program-Game/dp/1593...
View this Book on Amazon