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For power users text based will always be preferred.

Directed graphs look nice but visual programming has an important limitation: The ratio of useful information vs space is really small compared to text based representations. What can be represented in 10 lines of code needs a lot of space in the screen when using visual programming.

With that said, I think there's a lot of room for improvement and maybe an hybrid model, where the expressiveness of text can be extended with visual cues.

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I once mocked up what a hybrid model might look like: https://cdn-images-1.medium.com/max/640/1*a65r5zYR2hIc8UwfmF...

But I found it was really difficult to define the layout rules and constraints. Eventually you have to start doing some collapsing or shift things around into different dimensions(which is a kinda cool proposition). I did some other design docs and mockups along the way but was eventually discouraged by the actual compiler implementation- not really my area of expertise and unfortunately I have another project taking up all of my time. Mainly I was interested in designing a language that would work well in VR. A nice property of a language like that is it would work well with touch-screen interfaces(Touch Develop has done some interesting work here).


Your mockup reminds me of Mathcad[0]. It's used to create documents that look like math papers, except the formulas and code there can be executed "in situ". I had a semester of numerical methods on it at my university, and one thing I realized while using it is that, while cool for math expressions, it starts to get problematic when you start implementing more complex algorithms. Programming is a slightly different mental exercise than maths, and the code doesn't lend easily to that kind of representation.

Not to say it's a thoroughly bad idea; I think there's a lot room for improvement over our flat, plaintext canvas we work with.

[0] - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mathcad


I got something similar like that https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLyvBXLgHYHy1AIK6i5uw3... but behind the scene it's compiled to Clojure. I believe this is enough for build real world programs.




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