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Offline jdcarpe

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Komodo IDE?
« on: Sun, 11 February 2018, 21:43:28 »
Anyone use Komodo IDE for coding? How do you like it? I am the IT Director for a growing charter school, and one of my computer lab teachers is requesting Komodo for use in his classroom. By way of background, we are a 100% Apple environment, with iMacs in the labs and student iPads in the classrooms. We have K-8th right now, but we add a grade each year until we have K-12. So next year, we will have 9th, and this teacher plans to start a curriculum for high school which includes learning coding in languages such as Python, Java, Ruby, etc. Would Komodo be a good place to start? Anyone have any other recommendations?

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Offline rowdy

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #1 on: Mon, 12 February 2018, 19:51:32 »
I tried it a while back but didn't like it, for reasons I cannot now recall.  I have a few specific requirements for an editor/IDE, and most modern apps don't fulfil them.  Or I'm just stuck in my ways.

At work we standardised on Eclipse (mainly for Java), although that's probably a bit too heavyweight for your needs.

Have you considered a simple text editor, along with the appropriate command line tools?

I do a lot of Python, and use vim for editing and command line tools for running.  I tried using Eclipse for Python (with the PyDev plugin), but it was just too heavy-weight for my needs).

SublimeText seems to be popular these days, is fairly light-weight, cross-platform etc.

Or one of the Atom/Electron/VSCode spinoffs?
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Offline jdcarpe

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #2 on: Tue, 13 February 2018, 08:25:31 »
Yeah, I think ActiveState are just fishing for institutions to add to its roster, and therefore are willing to give classroom licenses in exchange for testimonials. We are probably going to skip Komodo, although it does look pretty slick.

I agree with them using the text editor and command line tools. I think that's how the teacher is leaning, too, he just wanted to see if we were missing out on anything by not using an IDE. SublimeText is great, and I'm going to recommend it to him over the Mac's stock TextEditor application.

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Offline ppp

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #3 on: Tue, 13 February 2018, 08:51:29 »
+1 using sublime and cli.

Later on it's nice to at least give them a taste of an IDE though because that's how a lot of real-world development works right? Give them a crash course on those things. Maybe couple it with some other dev tools like git or something.

Offline mbsurfer

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #4 on: Tue, 13 February 2018, 12:50:05 »
I'd suggest Sublime or VS Code. Each have great package managers to have syntax highlighting, linting, and intellisense for all popular languages. I would lean toward VS Code personally, as Microsoft has been putting a lot of effort into the editor over the past year. I use it for everything (except Visual Studio for .NET projects), and I think the students will catch on quick. I'm sure they'll like getting their own customizations and themes too. Also terminal/cmd is built right in to VS Code (Ctrl/Cmd + `) if that's a priority.

Offline davkol

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #5 on: Tue, 13 February 2018, 16:05:56 »
All these fancy IDEs and semi-IDEs are just obfuscation and lock-in for kids learning the fundamentals.

For experimentation, REPL is priceless… unfortunately, even many interpreted languages often lack a shell that doesn't suck. That said, IPython/Jupyter is top-notch. The environment available with Racket is also decent, and I highly recommend Scheme/Racket for newcomers, if it's "politically" viable.

If there's someone pushing Java for object-oriented programming (I feel sorry for the kids, the brain damage…), BlueJ is commonly used in education.

Besides that, just preinstall a couple of editors that don't get in the way, along with something like Netbeans… or IntelliJ IDEs, if you can get licenses. The kids shouldn't be taught the environment, though, but principles instead, including principles of debugging, perhaps version control etc. with as vanilla tools as possible.

Offline _rubik

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #6 on: Tue, 13 February 2018, 16:27:47 »
I learned Java on BlueJay and can't recommend that. I later moved to Komodo after a HS teacher recommended it. It's fine when you have nothing else to compare it to.

I do think Sublime or Atom  + CLI would be better choices (assuming your machines have the resources for Atom). But if you're looking for an IDE where kids don't have to touch a cli, Komodo will get the job done.

That being said, CLI is a very important skill. Maybe this is a good chance to teach them the basics?

I've never worked with any of the JetBrains products, but I've heard amazing things about them from both beginners and vets. Maybe worth a look?

Offline davkol

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #7 on: Wed, 14 February 2018, 03:31:41 »
I learned Java on BlueJay and can't recommend that.

BlueJ isn't for learning Java (and Java sucks for learning, because there's too much clutter), but for basics of object-oriented design (is-a, has-a etc.).

Offline _rubik

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #8 on: Thu, 15 February 2018, 09:07:54 »
I learned Java on BlueJay and can't recommend that.

BlueJ isn't for learning Java (and Java sucks for learning, because there's too much clutter), but for basics of object-oriented design (is-a, has-a etc.).

Well sadly I didn't have much of a choice. Fortunately, I have been riding the Emacs train for the past 3 years and see no sign of stopping.

As an old professor told me, "Pick your editor more carefully than you would your spouse... it'll probably be around longer."

Offline ojrask

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #9 on: Fri, 16 February 2018, 14:46:52 »
If you require a full-blown IDE for a range of languages I would suggest checking out JetBrains' products. They're good if you can afford them. Otherwise, I would just use a code editor such as VSCode or Sublime Text with some additional external tools.
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Offline typo

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #10 on: Sat, 17 February 2018, 21:49:03 »
Apologize this is ot but it is outstanding now they teach coding in grade school. Well, I imagine in upper middle class communities at least. I did not know this. I only do windows dev but ios has a stronghold on learning institutions.

Offline Blaise170

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #11 on: Mon, 12 March 2018, 11:43:17 »
When I was learning CS we coded by hand, no IDEs. We weren't allowed to use them until at least after the introductory class. I'm partial to Atom, as it's completely free, has plenty of add-ins, and doesn't nag for you to upgrade every few hours. It's almost identical to Sublime too in terms of commands and such. I wouldn't call Atom or Sublime "semi-IDEs", as they are both glorified text editors. Which is good for learning while also being better than Notepad.
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Offline iLLucionist

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #12 on: Mon, 12 March 2018, 15:40:37 »
Meh. It looks like it brings nothing new to the table that eclipse / netbeans / visual studio / xcode can't do. Another half-baked attempt. And the UI looks cluttered.

But we have already have heaven on earth. It's called vim or emacs, depending on your taste. There's a steep learning curve but there is a reason these applications are still around.

EDIT: Uuhh.. is this a marketing joke? This is a company that even sells it? It literally does nothing new. How can this compete in the market place?

  • Revamped Code Intelligence:NeoComplete in vim, various packages in emacs for every language, but also general dynamic abbreviation (which completes words that are in your buffer).
  • Print debugging: Just put print statements in your code and observe the result in the terminal. In addition, for many languages, such as python, you can enter the REPL immediately. Just run a line of code or the whole thing and see the output within emacs.
  • Doc integration:Present in emacs as well as vim, and many packages that extend build-in functionality. You can have standard libraries of many languages inside editors, and browse the documentation of your own project using plugins.
  • Live Previewing:No problem, vim and emacs have you covered. It's there for most dynamic languages, such as python and ruby, but also for web development, including javascript and html, as well as latex and pdf

In addition to this, vim features vimscript and emacs features a full-blown lisp implementation. As a matter of fact, emacs is nothing more than a lisp interpreter in which a text editor is implemented. Every action in emacs is a lisp function that you can replace or extend. Possibilities are limitless.
« Last Edit: Mon, 12 March 2018, 15:48:17 by iLLucionist »
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Offline davkol

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #13 on: Mon, 12 March 2018, 16:28:35 »
Komodo has been around since 2000 (IDE) or 2007 (Edit) respectively. It's also a CUA environment, i.e., familiar to Windows users. I actually think I used it in high school for a while (ca. 10 years ago). At the time, Sublime Text was barely announced and all those JS-based customizable editors (Atom, VS Code etc.) weren't around either. Back then, even modules for "big" IDEs (Eclipse, NetBeans etc.) weren't nearly as good IIRC.

So, I wouldn't pick it nowadays, but 10 years ago? Perhaps…

Offline iLLucionist

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #14 on: Mon, 12 March 2018, 18:18:50 »
Komodo has been around since 2000 (IDE) or 2007 (Edit) respectively. It's also a CUA environment, i.e., familiar to Windows users. I actually think I used it in high school for a while (ca. 10 years ago). At the time, Sublime Text was barely announced and all those JS-based customizable editors (Atom, VS Code etc.) weren't around either. Back then, even modules for "big" IDEs (Eclipse, NetBeans etc.) weren't nearly as good IIRC.

So, I wouldn't pick it nowadays, but 10 years ago? Perhaps…

10 years ago we already had emacs and vim with all those features and MANY MANY more.

But, I get it. There are many people who prefer IDEs and there are things IDEs can do extremely well, such as step debugging, code introspection on the fly, and refactoring. And I can see that it is appealing to have some features baked-in and directly available.

Emacs and Vim are both extremely powerful. But, you also will be writing a lot of customization for it to make it behave exactly as you want. As I always say: winning is losing. You gain some (flexibility, features) you lose some (the need to write long config files).
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Offline rowdy

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #15 on: Mon, 12 March 2018, 20:59:53 »
I've been using the latest VSCode for a couple of weeks.

Not as the main editor - we have to use Eclipse for that - but just to edit a few simple Python scripts, text files and so on.

Older versions seemed very rough around the edges, but lately it seems a bit more coherent.  Plus it's cross-platform.
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Offline pr0ximity

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #16 on: Mon, 12 March 2018, 21:13:53 »
If you're interested in focusing on Python, PyCharm is phenomenal. But as others have hinted at, an IDE is usually overkill for non-.NET development at the introductory level. Obviously don't bother with vim or emacs... the added overhead is no where near worth it for teaching, and I use nothing but vim professionally.

Sublime or Jupyter would be a very fun and simple environment. Jupyter for teaching the basics, Sublime for general-purpose projects after that.

Ultimately, the editor is so, so, so very far down the list of things that will make an introductory course work, don't overthink it. Focus your energy on getting them setup with an environment that works (installing the required dependencies and executing packages that depend on them) and coming up with projects that are interesting yet accessible. You're at an advantage with OSX, less to wrestle with than Windows and more familiar than Linux to the majority. Ruby treats OSX as 110% first-class in tutorials, setup, and dependency management, but the syntax is funkier.

The really tough thing is finding a curriculum that appeals to kids who aren't in it just for the code/intellectual elitism. I think ideally you want something with visual feedback that affords lots of opportunities to tinker and tweak, but that also serves some kind of entertaining purpose. It's more or less an unsolved problem -- is there really anything that will interest a majority?

If you're interested in teaching younger kids, I would strongly urge you to look into Scratch. It simply cannot be beat for introducing young kids to programming, and is not far from a good starting point for people knew to programming at any age really.

Offline jdcarpe

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #17 on: Mon, 12 March 2018, 22:20:58 »
Yeah, but do you use spaces or tabs? ;)


Thank you, everyone, for all the suggestions and advice. It’s very helpful. Keep it coming, if you have it.


And we will definitely be using Scratch for the younger kids. :)
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Offline Blaise170

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #18 on: Mon, 12 March 2018, 23:41:21 »
To be fair pretty much every editor these days lets you set whether you want to use tabs or spaces. And while I used to be all about tabs since it felt easier to maintain, I now use spaces for everything with whitespace view turned on.

Also I've used Panther (based on Scratch) in a non-introductory course and it provides a nice interface even to those with coding experience. I actually used it for scientific modeling of nuclear radiation.  :))
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Offline davkol

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #19 on: Tue, 13 March 2018, 03:19:41 »
10 years ago we already had emacs and vim with all those features and MANY MANY more.

But, I get it. There are many people who prefer IDEs and there are things IDEs can do extremely well, such as step debugging, code introspection on the fly, and refactoring. And I can see that it is appealing to have some features baked-in and directly available.

Emacs and Vim are both extremely powerful. But, you also will be writing a lot of customization for it to make it behave exactly as you want. As I always say: winning is losing. You gain some (flexibility, features) you lose some (the need to write long config files).

The question was about an environment for kids in school. It's unreasonable to bother them with a non-mainstream user interface, unless they explicitly want to.

Yes, the *nix shell or Emacs are customizable, flexible environments, but there's a steep learning curve and frankly, those environments aren't useful for _all_ possible tasks, only coding or writing, basically, not even all kinds of engineering.

Now, if there is some environment worth trying in education, it's one of those Smalltalk-based systems, where you work with _everything_ as an object. That provides an entirely different perspective on workflow and interaction. (Compared to *nix, you aren't limited to abstraction on file-level.)

But then, even Matlab/Octave or Python in Jupyter is a welcome change in the world of spreadsheet processors at best, using a document processor as a virtual typewriter at worst.

Offline iLLucionist

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #20 on: Tue, 13 March 2018, 04:03:02 »
10 years ago we already had emacs and vim with all those features and MANY MANY more.

But, I get it. There are many people who prefer IDEs and there are things IDEs can do extremely well, such as step debugging, code introspection on the fly, and refactoring. And I can see that it is appealing to have some features baked-in and directly available.

Emacs and Vim are both extremely powerful. But, you also will be writing a lot of customization for it to make it behave exactly as you want. As I always say: winning is losing. You gain some (flexibility, features) you lose some (the need to write long config files).

The question was about an environment for kids in school. It's unreasonable to bother them with a non-mainstream user interface, unless they explicitly want to.

Yes, the *nix shell or Emacs are customizable, flexible environments, but there's a steep learning curve and frankly, those environments aren't useful for _all_ possible tasks, only coding or writing, basically, not even all kinds of engineering.

Now, if there is some environment worth trying in education, it's one of those Smalltalk-based systems, where you work with _everything_ as an object. That provides an entirely different perspective on workflow and interaction. (Compared to *nix, you aren't limited to abstraction on file-level.)

But then, even Matlab/Octave or Python in Jupyter is a welcome change in the world of spreadsheet processors at best, using a document processor as a virtual typewriter at worst.

I understand that kids should be provided an easy to use environment to work with. I myself started with QuickBASIC in 1992 and then Visual Basic 3.0 up to 6.0. And Visual Basic was extremely simple and powerful at the same time, given its limitations.

In addition, I can't think of many things that emacs or vim cannot do. Have you heard the joke "emacs is a great OS, it only lacks a decent editor"? Emacs has a webbrowser (now with webkit), a terminal, an e-mail reader, a spotify client, git, calendar, todo's, and much more. It can even do spreadsheets text-based, including formulas in cells.

If you refer to "engineering" as drawing UML diagrams and electronic circuit boards, yeah ok. And there is also no "SolidWorks". But neither can you do those things with Komodo or other IDEs. Except for Eclipse, that seems to be capable of virtually anything.

If I were to jump on the IDE bandwagon, I would probably go for PyCharms (which is, in fact, eclipse extended) or plain Eclipse. And I must say that - even though it is commercial - Visual Studio is pretty nice.
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Offline pr0ximity

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #21 on: Tue, 13 March 2018, 06:10:17 »
If I were to jump on the IDE bandwagon, I would probably go for PyCharms (which is, in fact, eclipse extended) or plain Eclipse.

To nitpick, but since people are seriously talking about tabs vs spaces nitpicking is en vogue, PyCharm is built on IntelliJ, not Eclipse :)
« Last Edit: Tue, 13 March 2018, 08:41:39 by pr0ximity »

Offline davkol

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #22 on: Tue, 13 March 2018, 06:49:50 »
If you refer to "engineering" as drawing UML diagrams and electronic circuit boards, yeah ok. And there is also no "SolidWorks". But neither can you do those things with Komodo or other IDEs. Except for Eclipse, that seems to be capable of virtually anything.

It's about the paradigm—on multiple levels.

One level is the user interface. Most people get to use only MS Windows or the Apple's interface (or Android, if you will), which covers a broad range of specialized applications. Something like terminal environments or Emacs simply doesn't fit in.

In Matlab/Octave, (almost) everything is a matrix and you can treat it as such, which makes plenty of operations very straightforward. Similarly, (almost) everything is a text file in *nix and you can process it with a bunch of filters and what not, along with a great text editor. But once you leave that specific domain, things fall apart. Plain text files, for example, make it harder to structure more complex data.

Offline iri

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #23 on: Tue, 13 March 2018, 17:05:27 »
From my professional point of view, IDEA and PyCharm are best of breed for Java and Python respectively (though I'm not sure why you would teach Java to kids).

Don't bother with Vim and Emacs.
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Offline Blaise170

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #24 on: Tue, 13 March 2018, 18:07:03 »
though I'm not sure why you would teach Java to kids

Why not? Kids have the capacity to learn Java just as they do any other subject. I was 12 when I first started trying to program, but unfortunately I learned HTML/CSS at that point in my life. With the proper guidance I'd probably be a much better programmer than I am today (thankfully I don't code much as a QA engineer).
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Offline iLLucionist

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #25 on: Wed, 14 March 2018, 12:17:19 »
If I were to jump on the IDE bandwagon, I would probably go for PyCharms (which is, in fact, eclipse extended) or plain Eclipse.

To nitpick, but since people are seriously talking about tabs vs spaces nitpicking is en vogue, PyCharm is built on IntelliJ, not Eclipse :)

Sorry, I really thought it was eclipse!
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Offline iLLucionist

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #26 on: Wed, 14 March 2018, 12:19:06 »
If you refer to "engineering" as drawing UML diagrams and electronic circuit boards, yeah ok. And there is also no "SolidWorks". But neither can you do those things with Komodo or other IDEs. Except for Eclipse, that seems to be capable of virtually anything.

It's about the paradigm—on multiple levels.

One level is the user interface. Most people get to use only MS Windows or the Apple's interface (or Android, if you will), which covers a broad range of specialized applications. Something like terminal environments or Emacs simply doesn't fit in.

In Matlab/Octave, (almost) everything is a matrix and you can treat it as such, which makes plenty of operations very straightforward. Similarly, (almost) everything is a text file in *nix and you can process it with a bunch of filters and what not, along with a great text editor. But once you leave that specific domain, things fall apart. Plain text files, for example, make it harder to structure more complex data.

That's a valid point indeed. I also used Matlab for matrix algebra, great for that purpose in fact (statistics in my case). The input/output piping is indeed typically not done on Windows, but common practice in *nix-like environments.
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Offline rowdy

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #27 on: Wed, 14 March 2018, 20:54:06 »
I've been using the latest VSCode for a couple of weeks.

Not as the main editor - we have to use Eclipse for that - but just to edit a few simple Python scripts, text files and so on.

Older versions seemed very rough around the edges, but lately it seems a bit more coherent.  Plus it's cross-platform.

Maybe I spoke too soon.

It install an update in the background today, and for most of this morning I ended up with 2 versions installed, although I could only find one version.

Depending on how I started it (from Applications menu or via "open with"), I got a different version (as confirmed in the about dialog).

Eventually it seems to have resolved itself, and only the later version appears.

It annoys me that Microsfot have put the version number in the "open with" dialog though.
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Offline iri

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #28 on: Fri, 16 March 2018, 04:20:02 »
though I'm not sure why you would teach Java to kids

Why not?
Because it's not a good teaching language.
(...)Whereas back then I wrote about the tyranny of the majority, today I'd combine that with the tyranny of the minorities. These days, you have to be careful of both. They both want to control you. The first group, by making you do the same thing over and over again. The second group is indicated by the letters I get from the Vassar girls who want me to put more women's lib in The Martian Chronicles, or from blacks who want more black people in Dandelion Wine.
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Offline Blaise170

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #29 on: Fri, 16 March 2018, 08:38:48 »
Because it's not a good teaching language.

Subjective. One could argue that scratch teaches programming concepts, but does it really? Of course I don't expect kids to know how to program hardcore discrete mathematical concepts, but as a language Java works fine.
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Offline davkol

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #30 on: Fri, 16 March 2018, 10:31:31 »
The moment you have to ask students to ignore some clutter (packages, classes), when trying to explain Hello World, that's the moment of failure.

A lot of concepts is quite complicated in the Java language too—for legacy / backward compatibility / whatever reasons—such as anonymous classes. It might make some sense in an enterprise environment, but not in a classroom.

Offline Blaise170

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #31 on: Fri, 16 March 2018, 10:43:15 »
So when are kids old enough to be given free access to learn about "classes and packages"? Every language has them except for the explicitly visual ones (like Scratch) and the longer you wait to teach these concepts, the harder it will be for students to pick them up. Kids are far better learners than adults for many things such as language.

Java takes three lines of code as opposed to one to print Hello World in Python... But are you actually teaching a kid anything if you simply ask them to type print("Hello")? I'm not saying that Java is the best language in the world for teaching, but I'm definitely saying that it shouldn't be discounted just because of a "clutter".
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Offline davkol

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #32 on: Fri, 16 March 2018, 12:29:34 »
This is about a high school at most and if the class is supposed to be a part of general education, the kids don't have to see Java ever—unless they choose to become software engineers.

You don't need Java to learn algorithmic thinking or automate everyday tasks (which can be helpful to anyone or motivate people to get into software engineering).

At most, BlueJ can be useful to demonstrate basic relationships in object-oriented programming, but at the same time, the implementation of object-oriented programming in Java is brain-damaged and leads to cargo cults (which is another story about software-engineering practice).

Offline iLLucionist

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #33 on: Sun, 18 March 2018, 11:11:07 »
So when are kids old enough to be given free access to learn about "classes and packages"? Every language has them except for the explicitly visual ones (like Scratch) and the longer you wait to teach these concepts, the harder it will be for students to pick them up. Kids are far better learners than adults for many things such as language.

Java takes three lines of code as opposed to one to print Hello World in Python... But are you actually teaching a kid anything if you simply ask them to type print("Hello")? I'm not saying that Java is the best language in the world for teaching, but I'm definitely saying that it shouldn't be discounted just because of a "clutter".

I started coding when I was 4... in Quick BASIC, VB 2.0 + 3.0, and Turbo Pascal. I then moved onto Object Pascal when I was 9, and Visual C++ when I was 10. I moved to java with OOP around when I was 12, but stuck to VB for the most. Once the internet was maturing, I moved to Perl when I was 13, and PHP when I was 14, with OOP. And then I did some more Java. When I was about 19, I moved to Python and Ruby. Somewhere in between I did some C out of curiosity, but I never needed the raw performance, so I skipped it for the most part. I did learn about pointers and hash tables though.

I never liked OOP, I liked functional programming more. I use it only when I really have to. Otherwise I just like to pass hash arrays / dicts around and structure my code in modules.
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Offline iri

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #34 on: Sun, 18 March 2018, 12:31:20 »
Functional programming <3
(...)Whereas back then I wrote about the tyranny of the majority, today I'd combine that with the tyranny of the minorities. These days, you have to be careful of both. They both want to control you. The first group, by making you do the same thing over and over again. The second group is indicated by the letters I get from the Vassar girls who want me to put more women's lib in The Martian Chronicles, or from blacks who want more black people in Dandelion Wine.
I say to both bunches, Whether you're a majority or minority, bug off! To hell with anybody who wants to tell me what to write. Their society breaks down into subsections of minorities who then, in effect, burn books by banning them. All this political correctness that's rampant on campuses is b.s.

-Ray Bradbury

Offline iLLucionist

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #35 on: Sun, 18 March 2018, 14:36:29 »
Functional programming <3

Stop Writing Classes (Python Conference):

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Offline MrMen

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Re: Komodo IDE?
« Reply #36 on: Thu, 03 May 2018, 11:19:26 »
As IT manager in a French school, I’m wondering how your iPad are working with Scratch ? Or is it only with your iMac...

Because it’s lightweight, I try to use sublime.