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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 12:31 pm 
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tepples wrote:
GradualGames wrote:
...We're still talking about eating one large pizza.

And having a bank account.

A child has a 10 USD note and a 5 USD note.
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He can take this cash to Pizza Hut and buy a pizza. How does he buy downloadable software with them?

In addition, commercial software is frustrating for someone who buys a copy of a program only for it to crash on startup.


A kid could buy a reloadable visa card and use it to purchase the software. Haha.

Have you heard of Pico 8 being unstable? Or are you saying the possibility of that occurring is frustrating?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 12:34 pm 
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GradualGames wrote:
A kid could buy a reloadable visa card

Which has fees, making it $19.98, not $15.

GradualGames wrote:
Have you heard of Pico 8 being unstable? Or are you saying the possibility of that occurring is frustrating?

The latter. I have recently installed software only for it to crash. I imagine it'd be even more frustrating if I had paid for it.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 12:43 pm 
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tepples wrote:
GradualGames wrote:
A kid could buy a reloadable visa card

Which has fees, making it $19.98, not $15.

GradualGames wrote:
Have you heard of Pico 8 being unstable? Or are you saying the possibility of that occurring is frustrating?

The latter. I have recently installed software only for it to crash. I imagine it'd be even more frustrating if I had paid for it.


Well I mean...I wanted to learn C++ in the late 90's when I was about 15 or so. The only options readily available were commercial software. I had to ask my parents for 600$ for Visual C++. They were willing to support me and saw it as sort of a pre-college training type of investment. (I later discovered DJGPP...haha...only thing is there, there were no books that would hold your hand with that. I have memories of a lot of frustration getting djgpp properly configured in my dos environment, whereas visual c++ plus a Wrox press book was pretty smooth sailing. A lot more boring though because it was just MFC and not Allegro game programming...tehe)

Man I'd RISK a paltry 15$ (risk of any possible crashes) on pico 8 if somebody was talking it up as enthusiastically as I am right now. And if I was a fan of 8 bit games and wanted to learn to code and played those mini games (on their site). I'd be like damn, where has this been all my life?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:08 pm 
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I still remember in 99/2000 when dark basic was released,there were loads of 12-15 year old teenagers on the forum talking about what games they were going to program and the developer companies they were starting,it was fun to see them so enthusiastic about game programming.I bring this up because that costed quite a bit more than $15 for pico-8.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:22 pm 
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OmegaMax wrote:
I still remember in 99/2000 when dark basic was released,there were loads of 12-15 year old teenagers on the forum talking about what games they were going to program and the developer companies they were starting,it was fun to see them so enthusiastic about game programming.I bring this up because that costed quite a bit more than $15 for pico-8.


I remember that software, too! I don't remember how much it was. I seem to recall something in the 50$ range? I had a little bit of fun with it one summer I think. Biggest problem with it though for kids getting into coding is since it was 3D, the possible scope of any particular game was vastly larger than a relative beginner could really handle...something like Pico 8 seems ideal since it constrains you to 2D mostly (though some folks have written some software 3D renderers in pico 8, surprisingly good for how lo fi it is)


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:51 pm 
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Beginners may want to do things that lofty technologies and decades of accumulated code have produced. Our daughter-in-law has a degree in computer science, and graduated at the top of her class. She's good at html, css, php, sql, and a lot of other stuff that's outside my field (I do have my own extensive 6502 website, but my html is very simple), and she maintains the website of a university, with online class scheduling, posting online classes, online tuition payments, and other things; but she has no understanding of what goes on at the machine level, like the instructions the microprocessor understands, how to write an assembler or compiler, virtually no concept of address or data buses or interrupts, etc.. We need those people, but it's not the field I'm interested in.

The consumer stuff is especially complex, since consumers want things flashy and the market is so big. Industrial, not so much. USB is too complex for the hobbyist to write his own drivers, and if he did, the driver would take almost the entire 6502 memory map. But try RS-232, which may seem terribly outdated, and now your drivers take a couple hundred bytes or less, and it will go fifty times as far as USB can, and you'll find it still in wide use on factory floors, even though it has been around over 50 years. RS-422 and -485 can go both much farther and much faster than RS-232, but use the same UARTs, just different line drivers and receivers. RS-422 can do 10Mbps at 40 feet, and RS-485 can do 35Mbps at 33 feet. Both can go at least 90kbps at 3/4 mile. I think you'll find the same kind of complexity story with Bluetooth and other things.

If you want to start out displaying things in different colors and fonts and sizes and mix it in with graphics, and change window sizes and be able to minimize or tile the windows different ways, you'll have to start out with a lot of stuff already done for you, and you will probably remain ignorant of how all that works, like our daughter-in-law. I started out on an AIM-65 computer in a class in 1982, which had a 20-character 16-segment LED display and a thermal printer with paper tape that was something like 2.25" wide. We used built-in routines to feed these; but we learned the assembly language, and how to talk to the I/O ICs, which we could later apply to writing our own routines to feed other displays. It's not as fancy, but now you're learning to get control, rather than be a GUI appliance operator. As your programming improves, you can envision how to start doing the fancier ones with windowing and so on. You can't expect to start at the top. Start at the bottom and work up; simple assembly language, learn I/O, add macros, learn to do structures, see how the innards of a higher-level language (HLL) work, etc..

In any case, there are lots of stopping-off points one might choose.

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http://WilsonMinesCo.com/ lots of 6502 resources


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:56 pm 
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I began programming with DS Game Maker, and as the title suggests it was basically Game Maker + devkitPro + PAlib = easy NDS programming. The trial version limited objects or rooms or something, and the pro version costed either...$10 or $15. My enthusiasm about it is probably what convinced my dad to just give me the money in exchange for me lifting a few boxes.

If I wanted to introduce people to programming in a profitable way, I'd do what the creator of DSGM did and give a trial version with a simple and fun tutorial PDF that gets you pumped like "this is easy!" then offer a low price to take restrictions off the program.

And personally I wouldn't trust the PICO-8 with my money without at least being able to try it out. But I love the idea because these easy-to-use ways to learn to program really do take people far. An example that immediately comes to mind is CTurt. He started programming the same way I did and just read some of his articles, he's clearly gone down a pretty awesome path. He also used to hate me, a discussion not fit here.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:06 pm 
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nicklausw wrote:
And personally I wouldn't trust the PICO-8 with my money without at least being able to try it out.

The video series I linked earlier in the thread should be enough to convince most folks I would think. I was skeptical myself until I watched those videos seeing it in action, not just the games but the process of writing code. After all, if one is a beginner, one is not going to know how to code until one spends time with it; there would be no point in actually spending time with it UNLESS you wanted to learn---thus I would expect videos and freely playing games on their site would be enough to convince somebody (who found it appealing) to

BUY A PIZZA

to learn to code. Sheesh people :lol:


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:24 pm 
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GradualGames wrote:
OmegaMax wrote:
I still remember in 99/2000 when dark basic was released,there were loads of 12-15 year old teenagers on the forum talking about what games they were going to program and the developer companies they were starting,it was fun to see them so enthusiastic about game programming.I bring this up because that costed quite a bit more than $15 for pico-8.


I remember that software, too! I don't remember how much it was. I seem to recall something in the 50$ range? I had a little bit of fun with it one summer I think. Biggest problem with it though for kids getting into coding is since it was 3D, the possible scope of any particular game was vastly larger than a relative beginner could really handle...something like Pico 8 seems ideal since it constrains you to 2D mostly (though some folks have written some software 3D renderers in pico 8, surprisingly good for how lo fi it is)


Man I remember Dark Basic being the first programming language I really got into. You can build some surprisingly good looking (albeit simple) 3D games with only a couple hundred lines. A decent size project for a kid on his summer break, but very doable with some motivation.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:56 pm 
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GradualGames wrote:
nicklausw wrote:
And personally I wouldn't trust the PICO-8 with my money without at least being able to try it out.

The video series I linked earlier in the thread should be enough to convince most folks I would think. I was skeptical myself until I watched those videos seeing it in action, not just the games but the process of writing code. After all, if one is a beginner, one is not going to know how to code until one spends time with it; there would be no point in actually spending time with it UNLESS you wanted to learn---thus I would expect videos and freely playing games on their site would be enough to convince somebody (who found it appealing) to

BUY A PIZZA

to learn to code. Sheesh people :lol:

Kids like hands-on things, such as trying it themselves rather than watching just a video of it in action. Parents probably aren't very convinced just by seeing something, more by seeing their kid use it.

Also $15 could get you three large pizzas from Little Caesar's, maybe 4 oven pizzas from a grocery store. As a kid I would have picked that many pizzas for myself over some coding thing hands-down. :P


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:33 pm 
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When I was a kid I always just pirated things anyway (rather than try to talk someone into buying something for me) or tried to find free programs that did whatever I wanted to do.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 11:36 pm 
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I remember seeing the pico-8 a while ago. I think it was shown running on the CHIP handheld or something, thought it might be fun... eventually got to the docs to discover it was LUA only, closed tab never went back ;)


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 11:47 pm 
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For me the thing that stopped me from having any interest in PICO-8 was the code size limit. Lua just made it even less appealing and I just continued to do NES stuff instead.


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