Easiest language to learn

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70 Replies - 4218 Views - Last Post: 29 June 2013 - 02:51 PM

#16 baavgai  Icon User is online

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:00 PM

First, there are no modern dialects of BASIC. There are a series of languages that used BASIC in the name, but they all fundamentally diverged from the simple, unstructured, line numbered beast.

There aren't global variables everywhere... the is no scope, the concept of global doesn't exist; it's all global. Objects don't exist. Variables, all over the place, have no intrinsic complexity. Function and procedures? You can kinda, sorta, fake em, mostly by jumping around.

In modern languages, you try to ignore the more advanced concepts until you can teach them. In BASIC, there's noting to hide. No encapsulation. It's raw, bare to the world.

It doesn't teach good OOP; it doesn't teach any. It really fails to teach most modern fundamentals. It's unencumbered by them.
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#17 wordswords  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:13 PM

View Postbaavgai, on 21 June 2013 - 11:00 PM, said:

There aren't global variables everywhere... the is no scope, the concept of global doesn't exist; it's all global. Objects don't exist. Variables, all over the place, have no intrinsic complexity. Function and procedures? You can kinda, sorta, fake em, mostly by jumping around.


Doesn't that sort of sound terrible to you? If you want to learn programming, why not learn a modern language that is closer to more structured, developed, more featureful programming languages, so you will actually be able to put some of it into practice when you finally get a job.

Also saying that there are no global variables because everything is global, is kind of bogus for me. There is scope, just everything is set to global. You can still get scope conflicts with local function variables with global variables in VB.NET, see: http://msdn.microsof...y/1t0wsc67.aspx .

This post has been edited by wordswords: 21 June 2013 - 04:17 PM

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#18 baavgai  Icon User is online

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:29 PM

View Postwordswords, on 21 June 2013 - 07:13 PM, said:

There is scope, just everything is set to global.


Seriously?

View Postwordswords, on 21 June 2013 - 07:13 PM, said:

VB.NET...


Pick a context and stick with it, please. VB.NET is NOT BASIC.
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#19 wordswords  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:32 PM

View Postbaavgai, on 21 June 2013 - 11:29 PM, said:

View Postwordswords, on 21 June 2013 - 07:13 PM, said:

There is scope, just everything is set to global.


Seriously?

View Postwordswords, on 21 June 2013 - 07:13 PM, said:

VB.NET...


Pick a context and stick with it, please. VB.NET is NOT BASIC.


Well as I said, the original BASIC would be a terrible language to learn to program initially. VB.NET is probably a bit better, but I still think it encourages unstructured programming for the reasons I have mentioned.

cjfoley obviously I have upset you. Maybe we could have a reasonable and intelligent debate about this rather than you downvoting my posts for no real reason.
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#20 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:38 PM

baavgai Sounds similar to Small Basic
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#21 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:49 PM

Quote

like GOTO which should just not be used


GoTo is method local in vb.net (and c#) and is sometimes useful.
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#22 wordswords  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:57 PM

View PostAdamSpeight2008, on 21 June 2013 - 11:49 PM, said:

Quote

like GOTO which should just not be used


GoTo is method local in vb.net (and c#) and is sometimes useful.


It is my honest and sincere opinion that only crazy misguided beginners use GOTO. Can you explain how you think it should be used in modern programming?
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#23 baavgai  Icon User is online

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 05:02 PM

View PostAdamSpeight2008, on 21 June 2013 - 07:38 PM, said:

baavgai Sounds similar to Small Basic


Interesting. Kind of like the early days of VB. Perhaps more like QuickBASIC. Of course, both relatives.

Part of the charm of BASIC was its inherent limitations. Very few things to actually learn. No endless libraries of functionality to slog through. Rather, in order to make it do anything, you had to use those limited tools and build.

On the learning to program front, I thought the Logo introduced with One Laptop Per Child was brilliant. It ultimately became Scratch.
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#24 wordswords  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 05:04 PM

View Postbaavgai, on 22 June 2013 - 12:02 AM, said:

On the learning to program front, I thought the Logo introduced with One Laptop Per Child was brilliant. It ultimately became Scratch.


I think Logo is a good, easy to learn, first programming language.
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#25 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 05:22 PM

True that for a large amount of stuff you don't need goto.
But it nice to have a the basic building block on top of which all other structured are built on top off.
Eg while loop.
BeginingOfLoop:
  If condition = True Then GoTo FollowingCode
  loop code body
  GoTo BeginingOfLoop
FollowingCode:



- Jumping out of the inner most loop of nested loops.
Exit For is current depth only.
Which leads to extra conditionals being written mess up the neatness of the code.

- Inside Iterator Methods where the Yield mechanism can not be passed as an argument to another method. You can't even use lambdas.
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#26 wordswords  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 05:27 PM

View PostAdamSpeight2008, on 22 June 2013 - 12:22 AM, said:

Eg while loop.
BeginingOfLoop:
  If condition = True Then GoTo FollowingCode
  loop code body
  GoTo BeginingOfLoop
FollowingCode:



Seems horrible to me. Can't you break to a label? or just break in general? If you can't do those then I suppose you'll have to use GoTo. Maybe someone should just implement break instead, because that is what you are doing effectively, and get rid of this tiny edge case reason to use GoTo.
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#27 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 05:30 PM

Quote

... Can't you break to a label ...


So that would be a GoTo then?

Edit: You also use my quote out of context. I was showing that a while is essentially a GoTo with a Conditional Branch / Jump.

This post has been edited by AdamSpeight2008: 21 June 2013 - 05:35 PM

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#28 wordswords  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 05:37 PM

View PostAdamSpeight2008, on 22 June 2013 - 12:30 AM, said:

Quote

... Can't you break to a label ...


So that would be a GoTo then?


No. GoTo can be misused horribly. This was what Dijkstra was complaining about when he wrote his paper on 'Goto considered harmful'. For example:

Label1:
If Z GoTo Label2
Label2:
If Y GoTo Label1
Label3:
Goto Label2
Label4:
If X GoTo Label3



This kind of nonsense should not be allowed. It quickly messes up control flow to the point where it becomes unreadable.

A break to label, is different because you are only allowed to break a *loop* to that particular label. So it is only used in the way you are using your GOTO.

Python actually doesn't have a break to a label statement at all, because the inventor considered it unnecessary as only a tiny percentage of code would actually need it.

Perhaps a better way to address these problems are to write your code using procedures, so that you don't have to nest loops in this way at all.

This post has been edited by wordswords: 21 June 2013 - 05:40 PM

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#29 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 05:48 PM

As I've already mentioned there are some case where you can't. Eg Iterators.

Edit: Link to tutorial with example

This post has been edited by AdamSpeight2008: 21 June 2013 - 05:55 PM

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#30 wordswords  Icon User is offline

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Re: Easiest language to learn

Posted 21 June 2013 - 05:57 PM

View PostAdamSpeight2008, on 22 June 2013 - 12:48 AM, said:

As I've already mentioned there are some case where you can't. Eg Iterators.

Edit: Link to tutorial with example


I suppose. But that sounds like broken language design rather than a legitimate reason to include GoTo. I can understand why you'd use it in that case though.
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