ECAADE-EDUCATION & RESEARCH COMPUTER AIDED ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN EUROPE
ECAADE 2012, VOL 1 pages:655-663
30th International Conference on Education and Research in Computer Aided Architectural Design in Europe (eCAADe) location:Prague: Czech Republic date:12-14 September 2012
Learning programming can be a challenging task for design students, especially when code is to be entered in textual form. Visual programming languages, such as McNeil’s Grasshopper, have helped students to engage in scripting without having to deal with lower level syntax that is often hindering them in expressing their thoughts. However, the problem with learning how to program textually is only postponed: When switching to a new platform, students may be forced to learn coding from scratch, and, even worse, to do so in a textual environment that is yet unfamiliar. Our idea is simple: Connect visual programming with textual coding, using code-generation as means. Using this approach enables students to think visually, and see the results textually. An added bonus is the possibility to use debugging, a feature that is yet lacking from Grasshopper. By this way, our language aims to enable students to gradually move from visual to textual programming in a comfortable manner.