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Friday, August 26, 2005

Thinking of teaching your kid to program?
"So we had to pick something like 'tic-tac-toe', or 'guess a number from 1 to 100' or that kind of thing. Anthony decided 'guess a number' would be a great video game, especially if a vampire was the one that was keeping the super-secret number. He would have to have a really scary vampire.

Anthony wanted to get started on his vampire game right away. He didn't have time to watch me fool with installing cygwin or python or the J2SE SDK. We had a couple hours. We would need to get something working before bedtime.

So before even choosing a language, I had to pick which computer to use with Anthony: Windows or Mac. It really only took me a second to decide. On Windows, I would have to install a bunch of development tools - a language, an SDK, etc - and then I would have to get it all configured actually work.

But the Mac is Unix. It is a hacker's system. It comes with all the important languages: C, Java, perl, and python, not to mention bash and sed and awk. And vi. And emacs. On the Mac, you can turn it on and go. We could get started right away."

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