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Raising my son for the computer arts

 
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dornole
Geocacher


Joined: 03 Apr 2006

Posts: 462

PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 8:54 pm    Post subject: Raising my son for the computer arts Reply with quote

My son (12) is pretty interested in computers and programming (shocking, I know! a 12 year boy who likes computers!)

Anyway, though I come from a long line of computer programmers, including my grandpa who worked with the punch cards back in the day, my dad and 2 uncles who all worked for IBM for 35 plus years, and even my mom who wrote code at the kitchen table in the 1970s as a contractor -- I don't know anything about this topic.

Does anyone have any suggestions for nurturing the boy in this direction. I see there are various programming camps but they're expensive and I don't know if they're any good or not. He has programmed a few 2D games with Gamemaker but that's about it. He also very much likes taking stuff apart (e.g. modding Nerf guns to disable safety features and make them shoot farther, etc.)

Just looking for fun stuff for the summer that might eventually have career benefits or teach him some skills. Websites, downloads, logical progression of things to learn, camps, organizations etc. We're in the Twin Cities.

Thanks!
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merkman
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 03 Jun 2006

Posts: 2032

PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 9:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My guess is to start here

http://tcrobots.org/

http://www.oopic.com/

http://www.parallax.com/Resources/GettingStarted/tabid/270/Default.aspx

VBA is behind every office program just press Alt F11 and it will pop up.
(I would start with Excel; the Excel Object Model is easier to relate to)

Get a website set up and buy a PHP book. many of those tools are free.

etc


Last edited by merkman on Wed May 21, 2008 10:09 pm; edited 1 time in total
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merkman
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 03 Jun 2006

Posts: 2032

PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

These too.

http://www.digikey.com/scripts/us/dksus.dll?Detail?name=ATSTK500-ND

http://mindstorms.lego.com/eng/Atlanta2_USA_destination/Default.aspx

Do a search on E-bay for Omron PLC or Keyence PLC and pick up a cheap PLC

Mindstorms may be the way to go though.
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Dances With Beehives
Geocacher


Joined: 12 Sep 2003

Posts: 671

PostPosted: Thu May 22, 2008 4:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://thelearningpit.com/
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casinoman
Geocacher


Joined: 26 Mar 2008

Posts: 383

PostPosted: Thu May 22, 2008 6:50 am    Post subject: Re: Raising my son for the computer arts Reply with quote

dornole wrote:
My son (12) is pretty interested in computers and programming (shocking, I know! a 12 year boy who likes computers!)

Just looking for fun stuff for the summer that might eventually have career benefits or teach him some skills. Websites, downloads, logical progression of things to learn, camps, organizations etc. We're in the Twin Cities.

Thanks!


I have a son that is 14 I got him into the Boy Scouts at a young age and he has stayed. I feel it is one of the best things that we can do for your young men. They can learn alot of leadership skills and have alot of fun, Spend time with you and there friends in the out doors.

I found out that the cacmp that we bring our guys to this summer is starting a Geocaching deal for any troop or group that wnts to try. And now our hole group wants in on the fun.

Your son can do any and all of the merit badges that he wants and all will teach him some thing he may need when he gets in the job feild.

So my sugestion is find a troop in your aera and go to a meeting and see what they are up to. You may wnat to join your self just for the fun things they may do.
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merkman
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 03 Jun 2006

Posts: 2032

PostPosted: Thu May 22, 2008 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.w3schools.com/
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Marsha and Silent Bob
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 02 Sep 2003

Posts: 6261

PostPosted: Thu May 22, 2008 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It really depends on how your child learns. Me? I learn by example so, back in the day before this information was as readily and widely available as it is now, my father got me some books with excellent coding examples and offered me some simple suggestions on projects I should think about to get me started. I ran with it from there and to this day I find that I'm better off having a project given to me and a set of reference materials available for me to look through and while the outcome might not be the prettiest ever, it gets the job done.

If he's a learn by watching type you can try to find a poor college kid or some highschooler in AP Computer Science to give a couple of tutoring lessons. It might be a bit more expensive than a few books and vague ideas but it might be less than computer camp.
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