Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Do you know any teachers?

Today Quite BASIC broke through the top 100,000 web sites on Alexa daily page ranking. Right now it is ranked around 67,000. OK, I know that there is a lot of fluctuation and a fair amount of randomness in these rankings, but nevertheless it is a great validation of our concept.

Now I need you to tell any teacher you know. If you know a math or science high school teacher, please let them know about the Quite BASIC website! Actually, please tell any teacher you know! They can pass the news on to their colleagues.

Friday, December 22, 2006

The Wall Breakout Game

I just added a new game to the "house projects" on Quite BASIC. This is the most complete game so far. It is a variant in the old breakout genre.

Try it! I put a Google Gadget in the right sidebar right in this blog!

Btw, did you know you can do the same on your web pages? Any of the gadgets on Quite BASIC can easily be put on any website.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Faster and Prettier!

I have just deployed a new improved Quite BASIC to the server. The really exciting news is that it is about 15x faster!

The games play much better with the new speed and the Mandelbrot project really benefits too. We upped the canvas resolution to take advantage of the new horse power.

We also gave the gadgets a facelift with a set of shiny new skins. They look much better! And you got to check out the new and improved Trebuchet game!

There are also a few new handy functions and commands added to the language.

For more details, check out the update notes on the Help menu of the Quite BASIC site.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Thank you Trail Blazers!

I noticed in the server logs today that the first few users have started to use the user Google Gadget. That's the gadget that lets you take your own Quite BASIC projects to your Google Home page or any other web page of yours.

This is awesome! Thank you (you know who you are), this is what it is all about!

The feedback from you early adopters is very important, and you have a real chance to make a difference if you send a note to: feedback@quitebasic.com.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Good winds

Quite BASIC stayed in the top 10 of joel.reddit.com for four days just before they had their outage. Now that reddit is back up, we are still hovering at number 12 and are getting lots of referrals. The people at StumbleUpon like Quite BASIC too. Today I'm seing a lot of traffic to the Mandelbrot project page coming from there.

Since the launch November 1st, there has been a steady increase in page views. The site is not three months old yet, so it is too early to look at the Alexa 3 months average, but today the one week average page rank is around 500k.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Buzz around the Internet

These are still the early days, but Quite BASIC has already seen a lot of coverage around the web. David Brin's post on his blog created some waves and many other bloggers picked up the story too. Among the more influential were Raph Koster's and Ian Bogost's posts.

We are proud receivers of the award
"cool math site of the week" from Kabol, a website run by the Canadian Mathematical Society. Quite BASIC is Knot 327 in the braid.

But wait! There's more. Quite BASIC was also featured in the weekly newsletter of mathforum.org run by the Drexel School of Education.


This is the official blog of quitebasic.com. Quite BASIC has already turned out to be an unlikely hit on the Internet and it is time to open up this channel.

It all started when I read an article by David Brin in Salon (Why Johnny can't code). The article is about how bright kids today don't learn to program the way kids used to. He points out that there are millions of students with textbooks containing BASIC code examples, but that the vast majority do not know how to try them.

I proceeded to write a DHTML environment for writing, testing, and running classic BASIC programs. It was key to make the site as accessible as possible. Consequently there is no sign-up or even download necessary. Just go to the site and start typing in the program. -- Simplicity is key.

Now it turns out that there is another crowd that enjoy the site even more. Yes, you guessed it: middle aged geeks like myself who like to remember the good old times. Incidentally, they are by now often parents so it works out really well.

I will use this blog to communicate updates to the service and general discussion.