Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

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stevedee
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Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by stevedee » Tuesday 29th December 2020 10:56am

There have been comments recently here in the Lounge about the growth in GambasONE membership, while concern has been raised that many members are old codgers, who may checkout at any time to join that great Library in the sky!

I have no idea about the age profiles of members, although I have noticed that quite a few new members have arrived here with a background in other languages, typically Visual Basic.

At the same time, I notice that there are now over 2780 posts on this site covering nearly 450 topics. This can make it difficult to retrieve stuff, especially with mega-threads like "Did You Know?".

So what I think may help to attract new (possibly young) first-time programmers to Gambas, is a new sub-forum dedicated to tutorials for beginners. I know we already have "Project Showcase", but I'm thinking more in terms of examples both on how to use the editor & the IDE and how to use the language (e.g. datatypes, loops, using arrays or whatever).

The Project Showcase does not satify this requirement because it contains (for the most part) complete solutions. A Gambas programmer (of whatever level) is generally more interested in developing their own solutions, so just need enough detail to work out what is possible.



During my wind-down-to-retirement phase, I worked for a few years in a secondary school. This was just as the UK was trying to make the transition from teaching useless IT (mostly creating posters & excel spreadsheets) to a curriculum more closely aligned with Computer Science.

Unfortunately the chosen language was Python. This acted like a big OFF switch to the vast majority of 11-16 year olds. I feel that they would have retained the interest of more students by teaching a visual language like VB or Gambas. Obviously I have no axe-to-grind regarding Python Vs Gambas (I look around and see at least 3 internet radios I've built using Python). But Python is not a good language for youngsters to be confronted with as a first language.

So I guess my point is: Gambas should be in a strong position to attract first time programmers on the Linux platform, so long as there is plenty of information & support available of a suitably high standard.

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cogier
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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by cogier » Tuesday 29th December 2020 12:41pm

Hi Steve,

We have an area for this sort of thing here. If you want to create some educational material for publication I would be very happy to post it up. We already have 2 books which get quite a few 'hits'.

I am interested in your 'help' ideas and your new program, that I have not yet checked out, and I wondered if I can make a copy of the Gambas.One database file and allow access or publish a copy now and then. I am not experienced in databases so will need some help.

This 'old codger' is still ready to help! (VB - What's that? - Is it like ZX81 Basic?)

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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by stevedee » Tuesday 29th December 2020 2:27pm

cogier wrote:
Tuesday 29th December 2020 12:41pm
...VB - What's that?...
It use to be known as VD...but then they found a cure for it.

Yes, the two publications on the home page are great. My HelpBrowser can search Gerry's wiki and it works quite well.

But maybe just take a look at forums for other languages, like this one: https://www.freebasic.net/forum/ ...which I guess is closer to what I have in mind.

However, I very much hope that other members will get involved in this conversation. Otherwise we can assume that there is no need for change.


The GambasOne inbuilt search: as a test I tried to search on the word "collection"
Search complains that "collection" is too common, so I went to this small thread: https://forum.gambas.one/viewtopic.php?t=637
...which contains 7 instances of "collection" but 'search in this thread' still complains that it is too common.

Even my HelpBrowser only finds 2 threads on GambasOne with the word "collection" so maybe search technology has its limitations.

I'm not sure how we would use the GambasOne database. Normally a database has to be properly structured to permit sensible searches on the data. But if you can publish a copy to a webpage, then Run my HelpBrowser, you should be able to quickly assess if it offers any benefits.

I hope some of this nonsense helps Charlie.

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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by cogier » Tuesday 29th December 2020 2:58pm

stevedee wrote:
Tuesday 29th December 2020 2:27pm
But maybe just take a look at forums for other languages, like this one: https://www.freebasic.net/forum/ ...which I guess is closer to what I have in mind.
This has a 'Documentation' section. It does have a manual in it. Is this what you mean?

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stevedee
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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by stevedee » Tuesday 29th December 2020 3:15pm

I was thinking more of the Beginners subforum and also Tips & Tricks as a subforum.

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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by stevedee » Tuesday 29th December 2020 3:17pm

...I guess its whatever would help for a beginner to pick up Gambas.

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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by cogier » Tuesday 29th December 2020 5:13pm

I am 100% behind the idea of getting more 'beginners' and with that thought in mind I do not want to complicate the site more than absolutely necessary. How about changing the name of 'General' to include the word 'Beginners'? In there is the link to the sticky 'Did you know' section which could be renamed, or I could add another sticky post in there. 'Did you know' seems to have been found by plenty of people as it's heading to 30,000 hits.

As Steve has already said, "are there any other comments on this matter?" Please feel free to add yours here.

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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by cage » Wednesday 30th December 2020 4:04am

I do agree with the both of you. Your suggestion to rename General to Beginners would work, and I think changing Do You Know to maybe Tip & Tricks, which is basically what the content is. What we really need is more exposure with links back to this site.

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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by stevedee » Wednesday 30th December 2020 11:12am

cage wrote:
Wednesday 30th December 2020 4:04am
...Your suggestion to rename General to Beginners would work...
No I don't agree with this. I think its less intimidating (& more welcoming) if there is a Beginners subforum (New to Gambas? post your questions here), in addition to the General (post your Gambas programming questions here).
{once again, take a look at FreeBasic forum}.
and I think changing Do You Know to maybe Tip & Tricks, which is basically what the content is...
I basically agree with this, except this is a mega-thread, so would prefer it to be broken down. I've just been through every post in this thread* and roughly classified them as follows:-

Code: Select all

Post type		Qty
 Language/programming	18
 Editor			9
 Help access		4
 IDE other		12

Note: total may not tally with thread total as some posts contain multiple tips while some others are just comments.

My suggestion would be:-

Code: Select all

Tips & Tricks
	> Language
	> Editor
	> IDE (other)
...What we really need is more exposure with links back to this site.
I can't argue with that.

I wonder whether you could introduce 'tags' as this would make it easier to successfully search the forum.
To see an example go to: http://ww2talk.com/index.php?categories ... forum.157/
...and type in the search box: haa

This will give you a list of posts on the subject of heavy anti-aircraft which have been tagged: haa


*I have just re-learnt several things that I had forgotten

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Re: Gambas adoption, script kiddies & old codgers

Post by cogier » Sunday 03rd January 2021 2:48pm

stevedee wrote:
Wednesday 30th December 2020 11:12am
No I don't agree with this. I think its less intimidating (& more welcoming) if there is a Beginners subforum (New to Gambas? post your questions here), in addition to the General (post your Gambas programming questions here).
In my quest to keep things simple I have merged the 'SDL & OpenGL' forum into General as it has not been used for 18 months. I have added a 'Beginners' section as you recommended.

We will see how this pans out.

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