How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/students

Share tips, tools, and other resources for helping educators bring LiveCode into the classroom

Moderators: Klaus, FourthWorld, heatherlaine, kevinmiller, robinmiller

elamast
Posts: 7
Joined: Thu Nov 13, 2008 3:20 pm

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by elamast » Mon Feb 29, 2016 11:40 pm

FourthWorld wrote:
elamast wrote:Agreed. My comments were more addressed to the idea that LiveCode needs to be essentially given away to educators and students (and again, with all the bells and whistles of the full product) if it's going to get the mindshare needed to leap ahead.
What specific features are in the "full product" that you feel are holding folks back from using the Community Edition?
What I was reading recently is that new features (like the MergeEXT widgets) wouldn't be available in the Livecode 8 community edition. Second, there are limitations on being able to distribute IOS apps through the app store. Perhaps they could come up with an education edition that would stay full-featured, but you have to prove you're a teacher or student to qualify, and promise to use the apps you create in an educational or non-profit context.

Again, the bottom line is that I think you have to hook the teachers first with a product perceived as easy and useful that produces beautiful output, then the students, and then you will have a lifetime user base you can sell to for future commercial development.

tore–nilsen
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2015 7:20 pm

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by tore–nilsen » Mon Feb 29, 2016 11:46 pm

Max wrote
Hi Tore, thats a good start to find out specifically what is needed.

Here is what I'd like to see:
1. A kid-friendly dictionary alternative.
2. Basic Coding concepts like "if then", repeat loops, functions, variables.
3. Getting Started fundamentals.
4. Creating Games
5. Basic Animation
Hi Max!
I have been busy teaching all day today, and I have not had the time to answer before know.
Yes, I think this is something we could manage to put together as a team. I also had a look at the pages that Newbie4 referred to in another post, and has a lot of good examples, both of student work and of tasks that will go down well with students and teachers alike.
We also know that Richard M has both a Facebook page and resources on Dropbox that can serve as a starting point. I guess there are other teachers here also that can share some of their work. I am going to ask some of my students tomorrow if they have something they would allow us to include.

Tore

FourthWorld
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
Posts: 5467
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2006 7:05 am
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by FourthWorld » Tue Mar 01, 2016 12:05 am

elamast wrote:
FourthWorld wrote:What specific features are in the "full product" that you feel are holding folks back from using the Community Edition?
What I was reading recently is that new features (like the MergeEXT widgets) wouldn't be available in the Livecode 8 community edition. Second, there are limitations on being able to distribute IOS apps through the app store.
Some of Monte's collection may be enhanced to work with platforms other than iOS, and a few are available as open source right now.

Either way, there is indeed an inherent incompatibility between the freedom's granted in the GPL and Apple's limit on the number of downloads of an app per account.

If iOS deployment were the one thing holding educators back from adopting LC in droves, I'm sure the folks at LiveCode Ltd. would jump on that golden opportunity. But a couple years ago they offered a $99/yr option for iOS deployment, and there were so few takers it wasn't worth the cost of maintaining the program.

It's also worth noting that while Scratch and Python dominate K-12 CS curricula, iOS deployment does not seem to play a critical role.

There are some fairly recent packagers for iOS for Python, but they don't seem to be very popular right now despite the language's huge installed base. In a talk by Jessica McKellar back when she was Director of the Python Foundation she noted that she found only about half a dozen mobile apps deployed in Python.
http://blogs.dailynews.com/click/2015/0 ... e-keynote/

As for Scratch, it would be interesting to see a breakdown by OS and device type to evaluate platform use, but I'd wager most of the work done in classrooms with it is on PCs.

For mobile use Android's 80% market share make it a compelling option, and while the good news is that LC Community Edition is license-compatible with the terms of the Android app store, the majority of Monte's externals are exclusive to iOS.
Again, the bottom line is that I think you have to hook the teachers first with a product perceived as easy and useful that produces beautiful output, then the students, and then you will have a lifetime user base you can sell to for future commercial development.
I fully agree that LC should be capable and attractive, but if it's somehow prohibitive to use without Monte's externals we have a much bigger problem on our hands.

Given the strong role Python plays in education, and the strength of the LiveCode language and object model, I think our efforts are best focused on providing a great onboarding experience to the rich features of the zero-cost Community Edition.
Richard Gaskin
Community volunteer LiveCode Community Liaison

LiveCode development, training, and consulting services: Fourth World Systems: http://FourthWorld.com
LiveCode User Group on Facebook : http://FaceBook.com/groups/LiveCodeUsers/

wprothero
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
Posts: 54
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2011 4:57 pm
Contact:

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by wprothero » Tue Mar 01, 2016 1:06 am

Somebody would have to go through it and check that everything works, substitute "liveCode", etc.

For basic scripting, it's nice. A good intro to scripting livecode. Then there's the project browser, entering scripts into contols, setting parameters, etc.

There would also have to be instructions about building a user interface. The widgets are impressive and it could be very motivational.

Newbie4
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
Posts: 255
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:17 am
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by Newbie4 » Tue Mar 01, 2016 1:33 am

It is important for them to have the capability and a clear process to deploying their programs to their phones (iPhone and Android). Students are excited to be able to write a program, put it on their phones and show it to their friends. Just doing that is enough. They are not interested in becoming registered developers, installing the SDK's, Xcode, etc or putting their apps in the stores.

\We have all PC's in our classrooms and they students had fun putting apps on their Android phones for a while but soon grew tired of that once they mastered the process. I had to buy a iMac just to deploy to iPhones. The funny thing, is that they have not rushed to do that. We had some initial problems and they just wanted to move on to doing more different projects.

Writing games is nice but it is just as exciting writing other useful programs and apps. So I do not see an overwhelming need for physics engines, etc. As someone said, there are better languages for writing games. The more serious gaming students are going on their own to learn packages like Unity for building more advanced games (3D).

I do not think that the externals are a big factor. The students are happy with what they have learned to do and want to move on to do other types of programs. A few could probably make use of Monte's externals but they can also move on and do without them. They have other ideas and the discussions never materialized. The more serious students are also interested in moving on to more well known languages like Python and Java.

There is a lot of great programs that you can do with what is in LiveCode now. We just have to make it easy and simple to get started.

Gytoman
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Mar 15, 2016 12:11 pm

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by Gytoman » Tue Mar 15, 2016 1:03 pm

I am very impressed with all the ideas, time, and effort put into this subject. I teach Computing in a Scottish high school, last year I dropped VB for LiveCode, my main reasons for this is 1. the growing interest in the App's market, more engaging for kids. 2 The simplicity of the coding and the API. 3 to be able to associate programming elements with LiveCodes simplicity, i.e output to a field, drag and drop, commands put, ask etc, the API and code are easily relatable. What I would like to see, if not already available is easy access to small learning programs (anyone have any links ), I have used the ones provided by LC (most are too big for newbies) Ideal small programs that can be completed in a lesson, that focus on one key aspect at a time. I would encourage other teachers to move to LiveCode, start with new pupils as young as possible. (anyone have any links, I would be happy to contribute, or even start a repository )

macnomad2
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
Posts: 63
Joined: Sat Oct 28, 2006 10:04 pm

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by macnomad2 » Tue Mar 15, 2016 5:35 pm

Just to add a thought to this very interesting thread.

I am thinking of non english speaking students, in other countries (especially developing countries).
LiveCode is great but assumes implicitly that you have a fair level of english (because of all those little words, for exemple). A better level of english than for other (more cryptic) computer languages. I know it may not seem a big issue : some people commented in the past something like "everybody can learn this level of english", but I read here also that the Livecode language is fairly straightforward to understand (for english speaking and writing people).

So LC8 is supposed to allow for different dictionaries, thus helping foreign students to use LC with more ease. Not only to enhance the language but also to translate it.
Don't you think it would be useful in such a situation ? (I myself work with universities all over the world in many different languages).

Rauterkus
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
Posts: 33
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2006 8:12 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Contact:

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by Rauterkus » Tue Mar 22, 2016 11:57 pm

one good way to attract teachers is to post some of teacher created apps
Sadly, this site is getting very old. It is a great resource that should not be left to wither.

http://livecode1001.blogspot.com/

Happy to see Andy Piddock stepping up. I would help too.

All the teacher created apps, and micro lessons, could be listed in that blog.

FourthWorld
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
VIP Livecode Opensource Backer
Posts: 5467
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2006 7:05 am
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: How to put LiveCode in the hands of more teachers/studen

Post by FourthWorld » Wed Mar 23, 2016 12:58 am

Rauterkus wrote:
one good way to attract teachers is to post some of teacher created apps
Sadly, this site is getting very old. It is a great resource that should not be left to wither.

http://livecode1001.blogspot.com/

Happy to see Andy Piddock stepping up. I would help too.

All the teacher created apps, and micro lessons, could be listed in that blog.
On the mailing list he asked for help. Drop him a note.
Richard Gaskin
Community volunteer LiveCode Community Liaison

LiveCode development, training, and consulting services: Fourth World Systems: http://FourthWorld.com
LiveCode User Group on Facebook : http://FaceBook.com/groups/LiveCodeUsers/

Post Reply

Return to “Educational Outreach”