Mac basic or pascal or c++ ?

Anarchy99

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Dec 13, 2003
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CA
what programing language should i learn ive never programed before
my teacher says basic and or pascal because they are good for beginners but ive been told C++ is more useful
 

dejo

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 2, 2004
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The Centennial State
Correct. Basic or Pascal are good for beginners. C++ IS more useful (than those other two) but harder to learn. Since you are new to programming, Basic will allow you to learn general concepts that you can then apply to most other programming languages.
 
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Cuckoo

macrumors 6502
May 2, 2003
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The Netherlands - Utrecht
By far is Pascal the most stuctured. It will only compile (run) if the code is very clean. Basic isn't near as 'picky'.

I think the choice is, if you're just looking to have fun and not a particulair goal, go with basic.

If you want to lean how to program, and move on up to (for instance) to C(++) and/or Java or whatever, then start with Pascal. Pascal is a better playground for the more serious languages.

<oh, and im not looking for a discussion weather or not basic is a serious programming language, i say it's not, but to each it's own, basic is good clean fun, nothing more, nothing less>
 
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bousozoku

Moderator emeritus
Jun 25, 2002
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Gone but not forgotten.
Those are three of the worst programming languages you could learn.

BASIC allows you to be sloppy.

Pascal allows you such a precise implementation that you may not be able to figure out what you did 3 months ago.

C++ is probably the most useful as well as the most used language right now. It can be severely clear in the right hands and severely difficult to decipher in other hands.

However, I'd suggest you go with C++ or Java to start, if you're serious.
 
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therevolution

macrumors 6502
May 12, 2003
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Though I have not spent as much time with it as I'd like, Python is touted as a great language for a beginner. Clean, easy to read, straightforward, and even useful. I would recommend Python over Pascal or Basic without hesitation. C++ is useful but not terribly friendly as a first language. If it has to be one of the three mentioned, go with C++. Otherwise, check out Python and see if that appeals to you.
 
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DavidLeblond

macrumors 68020
Jan 6, 2004
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Raleigh, NC
If you have never programmed before, I'd suggest BASIC first. Just look at it and get the hang of using variables, if/then statements, and loops. Then get a good C++ or Java book to get you started on object oriented programming.

If you just start right off with C++ you might possibly get overwhelmed and frustrated. Just remember, its not about learning a language, its all about logic.
 
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plinden

macrumors 68040
Apr 8, 2004
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Anarchy99 said:
what programing language should i learn ive never programed before
my teacher says basic and or pascal because they are good for beginners but ive been told C++ is more useful
I've recommended before that if someone's serious about programming, they should start with Java, and then they could move onto C++ later, but I'm not sure if that's such a good idea now. I have a feeling that a Java programmer trying to learn C++ would just get frustrated and give up easily. I went in the other direction, C++ -> Java, and haven't looked back.

Anyway, I do think Java is a good programming language to learn, and would open up opportunities in developing applications for Web services, even if it still has limited uses for desktop applications. C++ would be more useful for standalone applications and games programming, and knowing it would prepare you well for learning other languages.

Anyway, you'll know you know C++ when you can read Stroustrup without wincing.
 
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Omen88

macrumors regular
Jan 8, 2002
177
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Flanders (Belgium)
pascal

I recommend Pascal as a first language as it was mine as well. Basicly it's comparable to C, but less cryptic.

Start off with writing some console applications before trying to program a GUI dealing with event-handling. Then learn the principles of object oriented programming and go for Objective-C if you want to program a mac, or Java/C++ if you want to be a more general programmer.

I might add I absolutely love Objective-C, it's really worth learning but has a pretty steep learning curve for beginners.
 
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codpilot

macrumors newbie
Feb 15, 2005
3
0
My 2 cents

I teach programming, Java, VB, C++, C, Unix.

Here's a thought. Try shell programming. Same basic constructs as in the other languages, it's built into the OS and you can do some pretty nifty things with it.

Once you get somewhat comfortable, then I suggest Java. Mainly because of the tons of documnetation and tutorial at Sun. C++ is a bit arcane (I believe slightly more powerful, just a bit harder for complex stuff)

Besides there are tons of ebooks on programming in the Bash shell - heres one:
http://www.tldp.org/LDP/abs/html/

The next thing I recommend - decide on something to code! Solve a problem, add something. Otherwise no book will teach you enough. Good luck
:)
 
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tpjunkie

macrumors 65816
Nov 24, 2002
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NYC
Man, anyone else miss LOGO? ;)

Yeah BASIC is really easy to learn, I wrote some pretty complex programs in it on my Apple II back in about third grade (BASIC was the only language offered in my elementary school). If you are at all serious though, go with C++.
 
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bousozoku

Moderator emeritus
Jun 25, 2002
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3
Gone but not forgotten.
tpjunkie said:
Man, anyone else miss LOGO? ;)

Yeah BASIC is really easy to learn, I wrote some pretty complex programs in it on my Apple II back in about third grade (BASIC was the only language offered in my elementary school). If you are at all serious though, go with C++.
I miss PILOT and LOGO. They're both good, simple languages that allow you to do things simply without being a rocket scientist. In fact, I'm working on an interpreter for both.
 
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