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How do I write Some easy and simple software? Answered

I am very new to this stuff so explain to me some of the vocabulary while your at it.  But anyway, I would like to start and write some simple software and build up the basics.  Please use every detail and explain everything.


If you want basic, try BASIC.
E.g. http://www.petesqbsite.com/sections/introduction/intro.shtml
If you can get the hang of that, you'll think about something less basic that's better suited to your needs. But programming is something you learn by doing it (even if you're copying other people's code and modifying it)


I'll toss in a recommendation for Python.

It comes in a regular installable version for whatever platform you want, plus a portable version for Windows. Probably not as easy to install as QBASIC, but no tougher than anything else with an installer nowadays.

Plus, plenty of free resources for learning it as a first programming language at any reasonable education level. I'm reading through Think Python now, and it looks like it starts right at the beginning (minus installation of Python itself).

He wants something basic I think. But your recommendation is good.


It's a bit blunt, but you really would benefit from reviewing this: http://catb.org/esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

Please read the whole answer before you get too pissed!

I'm going to give you some advice.  You probably won't take it but I'm going to give it anyway.  Take my advice instead of the answer to your question.

Looking at most of your questions that have been asked you are wanting/trying to "fly a jet" before you can even walk.

You can not conceive/design/fabricate/test/use ANY of the things you are trying to get information on until you have a basis of understanding of the underlying knowledge that it is based on.

I have a guitar so I should be able to play exactly like Clapton without ever taking a lesson.  I have a typewriter so I should be able to write like Hemingway even though never written a thing in my life.  I can reach the pedals on an Indy car so I should be able to race in the 500.  Does any of this make sense?

I'm not trying to say that you should not have ambition to make something but you need to scale back your aspirations to something that you have an actual chance to succeed in or your life will be filled with disappointment.


1.  Learn to program in a language that is appropriate for the project you intend to do.  Programming is learning a new language .   If you fly to Italy you can listen to an Italian language tape on the way there but you won't be able to speak Italian when you get there.  Same way with programming, we can tell you all kinds of things but until you actually start to STUDY programming you won't be able to do any programming.

You don't have to take a class, there are plenty of basic books like "Programming for Dummies".  Poor title but a great series of books for beginning something new.

2.  Learn what the programming process is.  There are set patterns of steps that programs "usually" should take to achieve the goal with the least amount of work and errors.

3.  Define what you want your program to actually do in a detailed outline.

4.  Start writing your program testing modules as you go.  Don't forget to comment heavily so it's easy to figure out if you have to go back and debug it.  (You will)

5.  Test your program with as large a data set as possible and if possible let others test if for you.  They will see things that you would never see and they will use the program in a different way than you would.  Then fix all the bugs that have been found and retest.  Bugs WILL be found.

6.  Market or use your program.

I hope you'll take this as it was meant and not look at it like I was trying to put you down.  I'm not!  But you have to crawl before you can walk.

Probably the best answer, I'm afraid. "Explain everything" does not fit in an Instructables Answer; it barely fits in a book.

Was the first link supposed to lead to "Rockingham County Photo Gallery"?

:-) Thanks A typo again! The manuals are here http://www.picaxeforum.co.uk/

Some depends on what you want to write it FOR and what you want it to run ON. There's no point getting hooked on the PIC if you want to write web applications, or real time DSP, or word processors. Then again, if you want to write simple fast hardware control routines, the PICs aren't bad. Arduino is better in many ways as a development system, and non-proprietary, unlike Pic-axe

I'd learn a high level language like C to begin with, not Java