littleBits

Discussion in 'Technical Corner' started by PPC1052, Nov 19, 2019.

  1. PPC1052

    PPC1052 En-Route

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    Ok, I may be jumping the gun here a little bit. Feel free to call me impatient. But, I have now bought a littleBits set with the Arduino coding bit for my six year old so we can start learning to code and learn about electronics. https://www.makerspaces.com/getting-started-with-arduino-using-littlebits/ The coding part is obviously going to be a little bit over his head for a little while, but I thought I would start teaching him about it. I have done a little bit of research to educate myself about Arduino coding, and I found Ardublock, which seems like a neat add on that may be good to help simplify the coding for him and help smooth out the learning curve until he's ready to start working in with Arduino himself. I have done some programing in Basic and Pascal back in my younger days, but I know nothing about Arduino. Is there a source for beginning Arduino coding that I can use to get started teaching myself the basics?
     
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  2. Heftiger

    Heftiger Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The Arduino docs are pretty good for the initial learning. Coding has come a long way since Basic.
     
  3. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Just look in the examples... (assuming you have installed the Arduino IDE) 90% of what I do starts with an example and then gets tweeked.

    Arduino is a simplified version of C - not hard at all. The hard part is figuring out what function to call to do any particular job - hence the examples (or google, except I prefer duckdudkgo).

    This is the worlds best video explaining the input/output side of the Arduino :)
     
  4. PPC1052

    PPC1052 En-Route

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    Thanks! That guy in the video has the same name as you. What a coincidence!
     
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  5. PPC1052

    PPC1052 En-Route

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    Yeah, I suspect so. Hence my need to teach myself a new coding language.
     
  6. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Simple question:

    When did "programming" become "coding"?
     
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  7. PPC1052

    PPC1052 En-Route

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    I'm an amateur at this. So, please forgive me if I have used the wrong terms.
     
  8. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I honestly don’t know when it started. A number of years ago I noticed the change, I don’t know what started it.
     
  9. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    After "programs" became "apps". "Apping" just doesn't have a very nice ring to it...
     
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  10. asicer

    asicer En-Route

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    I'm tempted to start calling it that just to be defiant. :)
     
  11. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I guess I’m an apper?
     
  12. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

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    Maybe not? Your avatar implies just the "ape" part.

    When the "Deep State" usurped the former to describe what they do to society?
    Just a thought...;)
     
  13. PPC1052

    PPC1052 En-Route

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    So I spent a fair amount of time down the rabbit hole watching your, I mean, that guy's videos. Pretty cool!
     
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  14. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Once you fall into the micro computer rabbit hole, there is no coming back.
     
  15. IK04

    IK04 Pattern Altitude

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    About ten years ago.
     
  16. Salty

    Salty Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    or 20.

    With the advent of the communist practice of "agile", nobody actually does any programming / coding / development any more. The "team" is responsible for everything, which is another way of saying that noBODY is responsible for anything.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2019
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  17. IK04

    IK04 Pattern Altitude

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    True, for those doing it...
     
  18. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Help me understand. I was a "programmer" around 40ish years ago. COBOL, BAL, MUMPS, Fortran, Basic and others. We often called what we did "coding". We coded all sorts of things. So I'm not real sure of your distinction, or why it's important.
     
  19. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I'm interested in the semantics.

    I hadn't heard the term "coding" until fairly recently, and I have not heard "programming" in about that same time frame.

    Back in the day, my first attempts in high school were "computer programming" using Fortran on punch cards we'd run through the IBM mainframe. We always "programmed computers" or wrote "computer programs" or just "programs". And yes, we wrote those programs in source "code". Now it's the more generic, I guess, phrase "code"/"coding"/"coders". I don't hear anyone say they "code their computer". Maybe it's the difference between writing code that re-formats information vs writing a program that uses a system to do something. I don't "code" my thermostat to change temperatures during the day, I "program" it. In my world, I "program" all sorts of control systems to do things through various software, firmware, and hardware interfaces. Meanwhile the kids in school are taught to "code".
     
  20. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    Coders cost less than programmers..….. jk, I have no idea.
     
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  21. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Touchdown! Greaser!

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  22. Kenny Phillips

    Kenny Phillips En-Route

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    Decades ago, when I was still doing it.
     
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  23. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg Cleared for Takeoff

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    I'm starting to hear people seriously self-describe as "hacker" more and more lately. So I think "coder" is going by the wayside as well.

    Personally I think it's a way to identify generational programmers. People who know what cobol is are programmers. People with strong opinions on javascript are coders. People who think Rust or Go or Elixir are amazing and new and have never been tried before, they're hackers.
     
  24. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Touchdown! Greaser!

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    https://www.cs.utah.edu/~elb/folklore/mel-annotated/node1.html
     
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  25. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    1983. I remember those days and I remember that article (or one a lot like it). Indeed, back then the real programmers could do binary arithmetic in their heads.
    I never wanted to be a "real programmer" back then. But I respected the guys that turned all those ones and zeroes into programming languages.
     
  26. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg Cleared for Takeoff

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    The giants whose shoulders we perch on :D

    I like the phrase "most pessimum", I'm going to use it. A lot of the ish I get asked to do can be categorized as such.
     
  27. Salty

    Salty Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    You’re not a real hacker unless you know the significance of the words oolcay itay.
     
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  28. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I haven't heard a good little-endian joke in years.
     
  29. Spring Ford

    Spring Ford Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I have no idea what age to start at but Logo was developed to allow youngsters to program. At one time you could even get physical Turtles. The turtle was programmed to draw shapes on screen (or paper). Logo is still around but it might be tough to find a real turtle, not much came up on a quick search. I think that Scratch is a modern take based on similar ideas but perhaps more complicated and flexible.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Logo_(programming_language)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scratch_(programming_language)

    That's a BBC Microcomputer in the image in case anyone wants to look it up.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2020
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  30. Spring Ford

    Spring Ford Pre-takeoff checklist

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  31. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Wow. That's a blast from the past. I started with Logo before graduating to Basic. IIRC I was about 5 years old. It was on an Apple ][ and it was a class at the university because none of the "lesser" schools even had computers yet. After a couple of years, my elementary school got a Commodore VIC 20 (with a tape drive!) and an Apple ][+ with the good ol' Disk ][ drive. I got to spend an hour with the Apple each day because I was in some "gifted and talented" program that got me out of regular classes to play with the computer. :rofl: But it did the trick...
     
  32. Spring Ford

    Spring Ford Pre-takeoff checklist

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    There you go, the gifted and talented can learn to code with Logo at 5 years:D

    I had another look for a physical turtle (no luck) but noticed this - Microsoft Turtle! Coding for Kids - Win 10 free download.

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/turtle/9wzdncrdlznj?activetab=pivot:overviewtab
     
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  33. DaleB

    DaleB En-Route

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    One of my very favorite books of all time.
     
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  34. PPC1052

    PPC1052 En-Route

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    A friend of the family gave him a Sphero Bolt for Christmas. https://www.sphero.com/sphero-bolt So we have been having fun with that. It nicely combines the coding (using a block coding language similar to Scratch) with a physical toy. Pretty cool.
     
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  35. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Touchdown! Greaser!

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  36. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    YouTube is great for all sorts of arduino stuff.
     
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