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How to program easily... good starting points

These suggestions are intended for the beginner. The question is how to program easily, or as painless as possible...

You can start with free programming tools available online, or with some high-tech toys that are specifically designed to be programed and that include all the software and hardware needed. Some hardware tools are mentioned on the page: Creative Electronic Projects

Scratch is a programming language
intended to make programming easier to learn for new programmers. It can be used to create computer games, interactive stories, computer animation, and all types of other multimedia projects. Scratch can also be used to play digital music and sound effects. If you aspire to become a professional programmer, Scratch provides everything you need to build a foundation. This programmming language was developed by MIT.

This high-tech toy is a walking computer!

You can program it effortlessly and make it move!
Easy-to-use software (PC and Mac) with icon-based drag-and-drop
programming and 16 building and programming challenges.
The intelligent NXT Lego brick features a 32-bit microprocessor,
a large matrix display, three interactive servo motors,
four sensors (ultrasonic, 2 touch sensors and the all-new color sensor).
Four input and 3 output ports, and Bluetooth and USB communication link. There are 612 pieces in this product.

The very clear instructions in the Discovery Book will show you how to exploit the capabilities of the NXT 2.0 set to build and program your own robots. This is a perfect introduction for those new to building and programming with the LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT 2.0 set. The book also includes smart robot designs and useful programming tips for more seasoned MINDSTORMS builders.
Programming for the Absolute Beginner provides a soft learning curve in programming for anyone who wants to develop fundamental programming skills and create computer programs. The primary focus is on teaching the reader how to program using a free implementation of BASIC called Just BASIC. Teaches all the concepts through the creation of simple computer games, making the learning process much more fun and enjoyable.

Hello World!
provides a kind introduction to the world of computer programming. It's written in language a 12-year-old can follow, but anyone who wants to learn how to program a computer can use it, even adults. You don't need to know anything about programming to use the book. But you should know the basics of using a computer, e-mail, surfing the web, listening to music, and so forth. If you can start a program and save a file, you should have no trouble using this book.

The Game Makers Apprentice shows you how to create nine games using the popular Game Maker game creation tool. This book covers a range of genres, including action, adventure, and puzzle games complete with professional quality multimedia effects. It discusses game design theory and features practical examples of how this can be applied to making games that are fun to play.

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Electronic Experiments

Creative Projects

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