BASIC is 50 years old today. The language has introduced millions of people to programming and is an important language for education and business.
The charm of BASIC, which it still very much has, is that it is easy to just start working and get results. There are very few concepts that need to be mastered before writing your first program, and the learning process to become an expert is a smooth and gradual one. It is a reliable way to get good results, whether you are teaching it or getting an application done.
I’ve hung out with some of the creators of famous BASICs: Tom Kurtz, Steve Wozniak and others. I have had the good luck to work on successful implementations of BASIC for Newton, Windows CE, Palm OS and now iOS, Android and Window Phone.
It’s been great to be able to keep the core of the language intact, while adding features to make it work well with the modern technologies of the web and mobile devices. It’s more powerful than ever and still easy to use.
Here are a few great articles for BASIC’s birthday:
- Remembering BASIC on its 50th birthday – Engadget
- Fifty Years of BASIC, the Programming Language That Made Computers Personal – Time
- Those Were the Days: BASIC Turns 50 – Sci-Tech Today
- BASIC Turns 50, and I Still Miss It – PC Mag
- BASIC at 50 – Dartmouth
- How I wrote the original BASIC for Apple – Steve Wozniak