New Scratch review

New Scratch review

Scratch is one of the best ways to introduce young people into the joys of coding. Developed by MIT, specifically to help young people learn to code, Scratch is a visual editor with characters (known as Sprites) and blocks that react to, and control, the sprites. The blocks click together in much the same way that code is written, and clicking the blocks together creates programs. The Raspberry Pi foundation’s aim to build tiny and affordable computers for kids gels pretty nicely with Scratch’s aim to help young people learn to code, so it’s no surprise to see Scratch form part of the stock Raspbian operating system. What you may not have noticed, is that the recent Raspbian Jessie update contained a revamped version of Scratch packing some great new features. The new version of Scratch is based upon the same edition of Scratch (version 1.4) but it now runs much faster (up to 10 times as fast in some instances) and has native support for the GPIO pins. Let’s handle the speed boost first. The need for Speed While Scratch is developed by MIT, it’s brought to the Raspberry Pi thanks to the hard work of a developer called Tim Rowledge (rowledge.org), and it’s from his endeavours that we should thank for Scratch’s souped-up engine. Scratch was originally developed in a language called Smalltalk, and it runs inside a Squeak virtual machine (VM). Tim has spent time a lot of his time ensuring that Squeak runs on various ARM-based systems like the Raspberry Pi (mostly because he’s a RISC OS fan). Tim says he spent time “rewriting some of the more egregiously ugly code, improve algorithms, tweak VM configurations and so on.” While direct speed comparisons depend on a lot of factors, a version of Pac-Man created in Scratch by Andrew Oliver is now running at a playable 30fps (up from 16fps on the Raspberry Pi model B and a mere 1 fps on the original Pi). This faster speed isn’t just a nicety. The way Scratch gets kids coding is by recreating games, and game-like environments. The improved Scratch performance prevents young people from hitting a performance limitation and switching off. Using Pins If the speed boost wasn’t enough, Scratch now incorporates GPIOServer so you can directly access the pins on your Raspberry Pi. It’s been referred as a “first pass” at GPIO implementation, and it’s a bit…
Source: New Scratch review

답글 남기기

이메일은 공개되지 않습니다. 필수 입력창은 * 로 표시되어 있습니다.