BASIC was developed in 1963 at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire as a teaching language. The acronym BASIC stands for Beginner's All-Purpose Symbolic Instruction Code. In 1964, John G. Kemeny and Thomas E. Kurtz designed the original BASIC language at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire.
Anybody can write a program. A background in mathematics or science is not required. Patience, practice, and an interest in the subject matter should suffice, along with the required software and hardware.
Understanding programs can appear daunting at first, but their reliance on logical operations allow for easy learning of commands which you will commonly see in many programs.
A program itself is merely a series of commands in the order in which they are to be executed. That is to say, that the first line is the beginning of the program!
All programs a user uses from day to day, including browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, etc.) and operating systems (Windows, Linux and Mac OS, etc) are separate sets of lines of code, which aim to fulfill tasks. The amount of code is dependent on how simple the task generally, and different types of code may be used for the advantages they give. BASIC is considered an excellent starting point for moving onto other languages, and can be useful for simple programs.
Programming languages allow people to give instructions to a computer with commands that both the computer and the programmer can understand. Different programming languages use different commands and different rules for entering those commands; similar to the way people speak different words to each other with the same meaning. One person may say "hello", while another says "hola", which appear different but express the same thought.
Computer programming languages can be similar to each other in the same way that human languages, such as French and Spanish, can be. Programming languages that are similar are usually referred to as related languages. Once a person learns a programming language, it is easier to then learn other programming languages, especially those related to the first one, as many similarities in structure are shared between languages, especially those with a common ancestor.
The language taught here, BASIC, is easier to learn than others as its commands are similar to English and it has a simple set of rules for entering them.
A program is defined as an instruction set that describes the logical steps the computer will follow to solve a particular problem. With programming the user is able to understand and communicate with the computer.
Basics of BASICEdit
Section for chapters detailing the basics of BASIC; i.e. data types, control structures...
- QBasic (The FreeBASIC used in this "Basic Programming" book is intended to be syntax compatible with Microsoft QuickBasic).
- Chipmunk Basic Wikibook
- FreeBASIC manual and wiki
- Gambas Wikibook
- QB64 website
- Visual Basic Classic Wikibook
- Introduction to BASIC gives an extended history of BASIC and its variants.