Carnegie Mellon University
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A visual programming language for novices

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journal contribution
posted on 2007-01-01, 00:00 authored by Jeffrey Bonar, Blaise W. Liffick, Artificial Intelligence and Psychology Project.
Abstract: "We present Bridge Talk, a new approach to visual languages for novice programmers. The design of Bridge Talk is based on data about how novices learn to program. Bridge Talk allows novices to program with programming plans -- frame-like objects that capture essential program components like 'keep a running total' and 'iterate down a data structure'. Novices are focused on the interactions between plans, not on the implementation details for a particular plan. Beginning with plans as a basis for a novice programming language, we were forced to develop a programming formalism that can deal with multiple levels of detail, merged plan implementations, and interrelationships between plans.The actual visual presentation for the language is based on six 'design, implement, test with students, and redesign' cycles."