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Microsoft Research Provides Sneak Preview Of ‘Boku’ Programming Environment For Kids

A Microsoft researcher on Wednesday demonstrated Boku, an educational game designed to help children as young as five years old exercise their brains by doing programming. Boku is a cute little cartoon robot head with big, soulful eyes who hovers over a cartoon grassy field.

He said he was inspired by his first computer, the Commodore 64, which he programmed in Basic. He projected a screenshot of the Commodore, with its tiny memory, and monochrome display with a black background, which, he said, signified infinite possibility. He singled out the blinking cursor for particular affection.

Boku is designed to eliminate the extraneous housekeeping of programming, and deliver to kids the head-rush of solving a problem and seeing a program work. There are no possible syntax errors; the only programs it’s possible to create are correct ones. Programs can run quickly after they’re created.

Full Story – informationweek

 

Boku is currently in pre beta stage but it’s still incredibly impressive. It’s a video game designed to teach children how to program. It runs off an xbox 360 controller and has adorable animations to keep the kids interested- but it teaches REAL programming from coding to debugging.

The goal is to attract kids as young as 5 years old by exciting them about the concept and emotional experience of programming. If you have a kid (or perhaps are at the coding level of one) you’re going to want to check out Boku!

Full Story & Video – on10.net

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