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Suggestions for an education programming project

P: n/a
Hi,

I've been trying to get my son interested in learning some simple
programming for a while. While I understand that a structured tutorial
is best, I think if we can write something cool at least once, it will
encourage him to learn more. While I have a lot of experience with
MATLAB, I've just started playing with Python. It seems to me to be a
great language to learn with. My son has an idea for a program to
write. Basically he would like to present a window with a small circle
on it. The window title would have the instruction to click on the
circle. As the mouse approaches the circle, it moves away from the
spot. Being a kid, the visual and interactive aspect appeals. I think
this will be nice as he can add complexity incrementally such as what
direction to move, how to handle running into the edge of the window,
etc.

What I'd like is a suggestion as to what GUI framework to use (Tk, wx
or something else). I can add modules if necessary. I'd just as soon
use something clean, understandable and not too complex. Certainly,
what ever we use needs to have good documentation. No code please,
that's for us to figure out. In case it matters, we are using are
programming in OS X.

Thanks in advance,

Eric
Nov 17 '08 #1
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7 Replies


P: n/a
On Nov 17, 2008, at 10:53 AM, Eric wrote:
My son has an idea for a program to
write. Basically he would like to present a window with a small circle
on it. The window title would have the instruction to click on the
circle. As the mouse approaches the circle, it moves away from the
spot. Being a kid, the visual and interactive aspect appeals. I think
this will be nice as he can add complexity incrementally such as what
direction to move, how to handle running into the edge of the window,
etc.
Sounds like fun.
What I'd like is a suggestion as to what GUI framework to use (Tk, wx
or something else). I can add modules if necessary. I'd just as soon
use something clean, understandable and not too complex.
I'd suggest wxPython -- start with the Bubbles demo at <http://wiki.wxpython.org/BubblesToy
>, which should work on your (10.5) OS X machine right out of the box
(i.e., no need to install anything extra). It doesn't do the task you
describe, but it does demonstrate animation and interaction with the
mouse, and would be easy to extend and adapt in the direction you want.

Best,
- Joe

Nov 17 '08 #2

P: n/a
Eric wrote:
Hi,

I've been trying to get my son interested in learning some simple
programming for a while. While I understand that a structured tutorial
is best, I think if we can write something cool at least once, it will
encourage him to learn more. While I have a lot of experience with
MATLAB, I've just started playing with Python. It seems to me to be a
great language to learn with. My son has an idea for a program to
write. Basically he would like to present a window with a small circle
on it. The window title would have the instruction to click on the
circle. As the mouse approaches the circle, it moves away from the
spot. Being a kid, the visual and interactive aspect appeals. I think
this will be nice as he can add complexity incrementally such as what
direction to move, how to handle running into the edge of the window,
etc.

What I'd like is a suggestion as to what GUI framework to use (Tk, wx
or something else). I can add modules if necessary. I'd just as soon
use something clean, understandable and not too complex. Certainly,
what ever we use needs to have good documentation. No code please,
that's for us to figure out. In case it matters, we are using are
programming in OS X.
This sounds like the punching-monkey-example from pygame. While that won't
teach about gui-programming on a toolkit level, it is extremely well suited
to go about small games and such. Or even bigger ones, if the son grows
up :)

Diez
Nov 17 '08 #3

P: n/a
Eric <er********@gmail.comwrites:
Hi,

I've been trying to get my son interested in learning some simple
programming for a while. While I understand that a structured tutorial
is best, I think if we can write something cool at least once, it will
encourage him to learn more.
I know it's not based on Python but...

Do you know about scratch (http://scratch.mit.edu/)? I think it's a
fantastic tool for kids to learn to program. Unfortunately mine is
still too young but I am trying to introduce it in my school (I work as
a teacher).

--
Arnaud
Nov 17 '08 #4

P: n/a
On Nov 17, 1:06*pm, Arnaud Delobelle <arno...@googlemail.comwrote:
Eric <eric.sh...@gmail.comwrites:
Hi,
I've been trying to get my son interested in learning some simple
programming for a while. While I understand that a structured tutorial
is best, I think if we can write something cool at least once, it will
encourage him to learn more.

I know it's not based on Python but...

Do you know about scratch (http://scratch.mit.edu/)?*I think it's a
fantastic tool for kids to learn to program. *Unfortunately mine is
still too young but I am trying to introduce it in my school (I work as
a teacher).

--
Arnaud
Actually, my son is 15, so Scratch might be too simplistic. PyGame
looks interesting. I'll play around with it tonight.

Eric
Nov 17 '08 #5

P: n/a
r0g
Eric wrote:
On Nov 17, 1:06 pm, Arnaud Delobelle <arno...@googlemail.comwrote:
>Eric <eric.sh...@gmail.comwrites:
>>Hi,
I've been trying to get my son interested in learning some simple
programming for a while. While I understand that a structured tutorial
is best, I think if we can write something cool at least once, it will
encourage him to learn more.
I know it's not based on Python but...

Do you know about scratch (http://scratch.mit.edu/)? I think it's a
fantastic tool for kids to learn to program. Unfortunately mine is
still too young but I am trying to introduce it in my school (I work as
a teacher).

--
Arnaud

Actually, my son is 15, so Scratch might be too simplistic. PyGame
looks interesting. I'll play around with it tonight.

Eric
Yes PyGame is the easiest way to get started on 2D graphics stuff. The
other frameworks like WxWidgets are great for building full gui apps but
have quite a bit more learning curve to scale before you can get stuff
bobbing round the screen.

Roger.
Nov 17 '08 #6

P: n/a
Eric wrote:
Hi,

I've been trying to get my son interested in learning some simple
programming for a while. While I understand that a structured tutorial
is best, I think if we can write something cool at least once, it will
encourage him to learn more. While I have a lot of experience with
MATLAB, I've just started playing with Python. It seems to me to be a
great language to learn with. My son has an idea for a program to
write. Basically he would like to present a window with a small circle
on it. The window title would have the instruction to click on the
circle. As the mouse approaches the circle, it moves away from the
spot. Being a kid, the visual and interactive aspect appeals. I think
this will be nice as he can add complexity incrementally such as what
direction to move, how to handle running into the edge of the window,
etc.

What I'd like is a suggestion as to what GUI framework to use (Tk, wx
or something else). I can add modules if necessary. I'd just as soon
use something clean, understandable and not too complex. Certainly,
what ever we use needs to have good documentation. No code please,
that's for us to figure out. In case it matters, we are using are
programming in OS X.

Thanks in advance,

Eric
--
http://mail.python.org/mailman/listinfo/python-list
I'm not sure if PyLab_works might be of interest,

http://mientki.ruhosting.nl/data_www...reenshots.html
and here my notes of july

http://mientki.ruhosting.nl/data_www...telpagina.html
hope to release it officially this month (should by then also include
Vpython and a MatLab like workspace)

cheers,
Stef

Nov 17 '08 #7

P: n/a
Eric wrote:
On Nov 17, 1:06 pm, Arnaud Delobelle <arno...@googlemail.comwrote:
>Eric <eric.sh...@gmail.comwrites:
>>Hi,
I've been trying to get my son interested in learning some simple
programming for a while. While I understand that a structured tutorial
is best, I think if we can write something cool at least once, it will
encourage him to learn more.
Do you know about scratch (http://scratch.mit.edu/)....

Actually, my son is 15, so Scratch might be too simplistic. PyGame
looks interesting. I'll play around with it tonight.
Look into VPython -- you can do 3-D _easily_.
--Scott David Daniels
Sc***********@Acm.Org
Nov 18 '08 #8

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