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Question for mac programmers

Thread title: Question for mac programmers
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04-03-2010, 01:35 AM
#1
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  Old  Question for mac programmers

A kid I know (12 years old) asked me how to get into programming. Normally I would have said visual basic (or some other basic), except his family only has a mac. He's 12, so C++ or java would likely be way to steep of a learning curve. Anyone know of any good easy languages for a mac user? Also, I'd need to give him some sort of resource, I don't really know of anything other than windows and linux resources so if you know of one that would also be great.

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04-03-2010, 01:44 AM
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I would get him started on C. Mac programming uses ObjC and Cocoa (amongst other things) which are all pretty much supersets of C. There is some use in learning C++ but really you can't get too much simpler than C (which means something anyway) if you want to get into Mac Programming.

** I say this on a limited knowledge. I have only just got into Mac/iPhone programming in the last few months or so, so I may very well be wrong.

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04-03-2010, 01:47 AM
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I'm reluctant to recommend C to a 12 year old, C has a sharp learning curve. I'd rather start him off on an easier language until he understands the basic concepts of programming. I don't think his focus is anything serious yet, he just wants to get the hang of things. Keep in mind he probably doesn't even understand the concept of variables, kids learn that stuff in eights grade (usually age 13).

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04-03-2010, 01:51 AM
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Fair enough. It certainly isn't out of his depth, or shouldn't be any way. There was only an article the other day where it described how the youngest iphone/mac developer has only just turned 14.

Saying that, I'm not sure there even is a simple language that doesn't use variables and such?

Sorry for being no help

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04-03-2010, 02:22 AM
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The point is that the language teaches those concepts while not having a hard syntax. At the university I go to I am helping adults with programming because c was too hard of a starter. For instance:

C
Code:
#include <stdio.h>

int main()
{
printf("Hello World");
return 0;
}
VB
Code:
Imports System
Public Module modmain
   Sub Main()
     Console.WriteLine ("Hello World using Visual Basic!")
   End Sub
End Module
Bolded code is auto generated.

While the hello world example isn't the best comparison, VB is tons easier in almost every way. It seems far more suitable for a beginner.

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04-03-2010, 10:01 AM
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I assume your not looking at web languages aswell?

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04-03-2010, 04:12 PM
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That would add more complication than it's worth, I'd have to teach him how to use FTP and stuff. I'm just wondering if there is an easy programminganguage for mac.

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04-03-2010, 04:21 PM
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I think the short answer is no. For macs specifically your going to be looking at C, C++ or objective-c. There is no real vb equivalent. Java isn't all that hard though, yeah there are some complicated features and making any sort of gui is a complete nightmare, but for algorithms and the fundamentals it isn't bad.

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04-03-2010, 06:27 PM
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Thats was I thought, thanks for confirming that.

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