Hello World! Computer Programming for Kids and Other Beginners Paperback – May 8 2009
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About the Author
Warren Sande is an Electronic Systems Engineer who uses Python (and other languages) in his work, and also uses it to help teach his son about computers and programming. He holds a degree in Electronic Systems Engineering from the University of Regina, Saskatchewan as well as a Diploma in Communication Arts, specializing in Broadcasting, from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology. He has taught introductory software courses to computer novices.
Carter Sande is a bright, curious, energetic, and thoughtful boy who loves computers, playing the piano, bouncing on the trampoline, and Mario. He has been playing and experimenting with computers from a young age.
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Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Due to the excellent tools and step-by-step examples given by Warren and Carter Sande the young reader, or his/her parent, is well prepared for a modern college level course in Data Structures or Algorithms with well illustrated examples of Lists, Modules, Event-driven and Object-Oriented Programming. The use of GUI-builders and programming libraries enable the novice to achieve impressive results within the course of a few short months of self-instruction.
The book is well illustrated, and the examples and tools downloadable from the book's web site run correctly without the need to fix typo's.
All in all, the book is an excellent read for a 12-year old, or an adult novice, and will provide superb instruction and entertainment for its readers.
The fact that it is good for a young audience does not mean that it is dumbed down too far to be useful for any age. The depth and pace of the material is appropriate for anyone, starting from scratch, who wants to learn to program from lots of examples. Actually, it sets the stage nicely for someone who is anxious about needing to learn programming at the university level.
The only real down side is the support for Mac. The book uses Python which works on Mac, Windows and Linux but a couple of the components used in the book do not have good instructions for the Mac on the books website. For example, they are written for older Mac OS or require you to dig deep in the system files to find the directories where things belong. The forums on the website will help but expect to need to dig around a bit, especially if you use Mac OS 10.5 (Leopard), until the author(s) fix the main Mac instructions.
Even though I had to poke around a bit to make sure the Mac would behave, I still love this book. Setting aside the fact that this fills a badly need gap in programming instruction for kids, this book is just great with a wonderful ratio of code snippets to explanations and clear concise discussions of both basic and fairly advanced concepts (like object oriented programming).
We had to wait a while for this book, as the release date was changed and there were other problems, but this was definitely worth the wait. My son read through the book in no time flat, and definitely understands what's in it.
The next step is for the two of them to sit down and go through the code examples together.
Mr. Sande (young and old), thank you so much for writing this book!
Python has many great libraries and the use of Pygame makes possible some projects that would be much too difficult for this level of work. That really hooked my daughter, the ability to make her own games. We've been having a blast working through the book together.
There are tons of learning opportunities that take things well outside the realm of just 'programming'. I recommend this book to anyone with kids that are inclined towards doing more with a computer than just running applications.
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