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Default 01-07-2009, 07:50 PM

Originally Posted by lanceA View Post

[Note: I have not cleared any of this with the Alice team. As open as they are, they are a little reluctant to say too much at this time about 3.0, as things are changing very rapidly. I did tell Wanda that I wanted to pass on some of the exciting news to the community, though, and assured her that I would make sure to point out that this is simply my impression at this time. Their motivations with Alice put students and children first and I think people will continue to be impressed with Alice for a long time. Just my view.... ]

Alice is in beta form right now. There was quite a large group of possible beta testers at CMU for the Jan 5,6 workshop. My impression was that the core team is really doing a good job in making 3.0 into "what 2.0 should have been." Because of this, it is still very much in beta form. Many of the features of the 2.x interface simply have not been implemented yet. This is not a "tweaking" of 2.0 (for that, see version 2.2). This version will have features 2.x did not have, and vice versa.

Obviously it will still be Alice, and people will (I believe) adapt easily. Some of the new features, also, are quite exciting. Of course the Sims2 models get most of the attention, but for me there was something even more impressive: Alice is open source to begin with, and we all know it's Java at the core, but students really don't see the Alice code in a text editor. That will change in 3.0, and the implications are huge for teachers of AP Computer Science.

I probably shouldn't be giving so many details, but it was really cool to see Wanda Dann 1) open an Alice project in Sun's NetBeans IDE, 2) edit the code in the text editor, and 3) run the scene directly from NetBeans.

Alice 3.0 will be OOP done the right way. These are not huge changes from 2.x, but they should make all the OOP fanatics very happy.

As usual the Alice team members that gave the workshop were super nice and willing to share their thoughts, motivations and frustrations. I hope the Alice community only gets stronger in time, as they are doing so many things the right way, IMO.
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