shiremath

 What is your preference when it comes to programming your BEST robot? votes

 Using textual code 5 votes
55%
 Using graphical blocks 4 votes
44%
 I don't care! 0 votes
0%
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jgraber
Text! not graphics
Procedural code! not object oriented.
I have vast experience using tools to work with text.
I write tools to parse, comment, auto-generate, reformat, audit  text.


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widerbestrobot
Personally I use both, for blocks i use Simulink, and for code i use Matlab function blocks.
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dmgauntt
I have a very strong preference for text based programming.  I find it much, much faster to write code than to drag blocks, but I have about 30 years experience programming.  However, my BEST Robotics middle school students use EasyC; one year we tried RobotC, and they decided to return to the GUI system.

In the spring I work with them to program Legos Mindstorms systems using Java, so they do get experience with line code.
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amullins
I have a feeling this forum is a bit skewed for now, as most of us are experienced developers who appreciate the specificity of textual code. With a GUI you always know something's going on that doesn't meet the eye, and that makes us question the level of control you actually have over the resulting executable. Also, typing can be a lot faster than moving a mouse as dmgauntt mentioned.

I think for purposes of educational competitions like ours, the graphical systems provide value in that they remove some of the fear factor surrounding programming for beginning students (and teachers). Once you get in the mindset of thinking about exactly what you want the machine to do, it's much easier to understand what's going on in textual code.
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