Blast Off With BASICis a programming tutorial. The purpose of the text is to teach programming skills to young people. That it uses the BASIC programming language is entirely of secondary importance. The skills to be learned through this tutorial will be valuable regardless of the language used in later efforts. In fact, the latest visual programming tools (or integrated development environments) often obscure the fundamental logic of today's programs. Therefore, even though this text is fairly out-of-date with regards to the language (GW-BASIC) it still servers as a useful introduction to the programming process.
The text was written around 1990 and was aimed at a middle school or junior high school audience. How do you know if this text is right for you? If you're interested in how computers work, curious about the programs and games that you play, then take a look. Beginning in the very first chapter you will be writing programs and having your computer do what you tell it to do. If this sounds exciting, then you may have a future in programming.
Ten years ago, most all personal computers came with a version of the BASIC language built into the operating system. Nowadays, it may be something of a chore to locate and install GW-BASIC. If you don't have GW-BASIC, an Internet search for "GW-BASIC" will reveal several sites from whence it may be downloaded.
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