The Unique Features of the Small Basic Language


This blog post originates with the question in the  Small Basic FAQ . We also wanted to give the community a chance to answer this question in depth in the TechNet Wiki article.  

What are the unique features of the Small Basic language?

  • Imperative
    Just like the early variants of BASIC, Small Basic is imperative and doesn’t use or expose beginners to concepts like scopes, types, object orientation, and more.
     
  • Size
    The Small Basic language consists of just 14 keywords. 
     
  • Ease of Use
    The language only uses text operators (AND, OR); not symbol operators like { } or & and |  
     
  • Easy to Share 
    Share programs easily with the “Publish” and “Import” buttons, which share programs to and from the Small Basic program share server (smallbasic.com). Example.
     
  • Type System
    There actually isn’t one. You can create string and numeric constants and assign them to variables. Operations performed on these variables will be interpreted according to the content.
     
  • Variables
    All variables are global and are always initialized. They can be used before they’re assigned.
     
  • Events
    You can create a sub-routine and assign it to an event. This will wire the it up to an the event.
     
  • Libraries
    The libraries provide static “Objects” that group operations, properties and events. New libraries can be created using other .Net Languages and added to the Small Basic runtime.
     
  • Graduate to Visual Basic
    By clicking the “Graduate” button, you can move your program into Visual Basic and continue to learn programming, building the skills of a professional developer!
  • Color
    Each type of code is assigned its own color, built right in the language’s IDE. See Small Basic: IDE Colors.
     

What should be added to this list? Leave a comment!

You can also add to the community version of this list on TechNet Wiki.

   – Tall Basic Ed

Comments (7)

  1. We can share programs easily with "Publish" and "Import" button and Small Basic program share server (smallbasic.com).

  2. User Ed says:

    Nonki, perfect! I added "Easy to Share" above. Thanks!

  3. I taught my little one the concept of DLL.  Now he understands he needs the dll and .exe to run a SB program.  It wasn't too difficult for a 3rd-grader to grasp the concept :)

  4. User Ed says:

    Ray, an 8 year old? That's fantastic! We should really compile these success stories. That's an idea for today's blog! =^)

  5. Connor says:

    It's colour coordinated – each different type of text has a different colour which makes it look nice

  6. User Ed says:

    Conner, I added the point about Color. Thanks!

  7. User Ed says:

    If you go to the Wiki article, you can see how this simple list evolved into a much bigger list: social.technet.microsoft.com/…/14114.the-unique-features-of-the-small-basic-language.aspx