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Coursera course on game development using Python (first homework due tomorrow) (coursera.org)
54 points by bcjordan on Oct 18, 2012 | hide | past | favorite | 24 comments



I think Coursera needs to do a course on game engine architecture with real-world examples (idtech, ogre).


The problem that I see with that is, these engines are difficult to do in one class. Generally, learning that is a full two-year program involving programming, logic, math, 3D design, etc. Using 3D engines gets difficult to teach in a 7 week course unless the student already knows quite a bit.


Should be enough time to understand and implement a basic raycasting engine ala Wolf3D/Doom though.


well, just signed up.

My first programming experiences were actually small games for the TI-83, a humble dream soccer and a bowling game.

PC's were very expensive around '95, a fact which also lead me to take computer science for having access to them at school and obviously, gaming :-) Warcraft, Dune 2, Lost Vikings and the sorts.

After my first job and subsequently, that fascination on developing games faded away under other things like e-commerce, corporate applications and messing with Linux also sinked a large deal of my spare time etc but haven't yet lost hope of finding a way into it.


First homework due tomorrow!

That brings back some unpleasant memories. When I was a CS undergrad something the professors would enjoy doing was assigning problem sets on the very first lecture of a module that were deliverable by the next lecture (often the next day). I assume it was a mechanism for figuring out people's learning rates.

Of course it was great fun beginning a new term and having 2 or 3 such classes on the first day.


If you really want to learn game development on the web, you should check out http://codehs.com

You learn how to make games that run in HTML5 Canvas using JavaScript, and there are custom libraries that make graphics and user interaction much easier to deal with.

Also, you can take the class at your own pace, so no need to worry about artificial deadlines.


It looks like Udacity is doing a similar course in the new year: http://www.udacity.com/overview/Course/cs255/CourseRev/1


Wow, it seems that they're generating js + canvas games straight from Python (the tool used in the course is http://www.codeskulptor.org/ ). Never heard of it before


They seem to have built it by themselves this summer.


Okay, I had a look and it and its clearly for educational purposes only. Indeed this course is more a "fun" introduction to programming ("what's a function" ... ) than a real course on building games.


In the recent news about the course, a headline reads: "Make a student tutorial video, Win an iPad" (https://class.coursera.org/interactivepython-2012-001/class/...) - Sounds wierd to give a non-programmable device to someone who is following a course on interactive programming. Someone did not get the point.


In what universe is iPad non-programmable?


Try to write a python script and run it natively on the iPad, and we'll talk again if we live in the same universe.


I don't follow. Is Python the only programming language available? Is programmability determined by a device's ability to run python scripts natively?


That's an example. On any open device you can program in any language. There are no restrictions. The iPad is a walled garden and there are clear limits to what you can envision doing, embedded in the way it is designed and locked down.


In the universe where, to program it, you need a fully fledged computer to do the development on?


So? You still are able to program it, aren't you? Therefore, it is programmable.


I can't personally, as I can't afford a mac. But I see what you mean.

There are different senses in which the word 'programmable' can be used - you can program a VCR without ever seeing a line of code!

What I assume ekianjo meant was: There is a long standing tradition in the personal computing industry of being able to program on the computer itself without costly extra equipment or software. You look at your BBC Micro, your ZX-81, your TRS-80 they can all be programmed on the device. It was the same with mainframes and servers. Even DOS and Windows had QBASIC. Nowerdays, programming tools can be downloaded over the internet in a few clicks. The PC has always been a device which can not only consume software, but can produce it.

Many people in the hacking community see this as a good thing - as a democratisation of creative power, and for educating the next generation of technologists, engineers, scientists and makers.

The iPad lacks the ability to program on the device itself. It can only consume software, it cannot produce it. It does not belong to the long, revered tradition of self-programmability. It is in that sense that it is not programmable.


Yes, that is exactly what I meant. Especially in the context of a course to learn about interactive computing, I find this very ironic that the prize offered is a non-programmable device. Why not offer a washing machine or an oven, then?


In what universe is an IPad not something nice to win?


Great. Just signed up. Anyone knows of a similar courses/tutorials for C++ Game dev?


I am also very interested, but could not find this kind of course


There's the Game Institute (http://www.gameinstitute.com) but they're not free...


Almost missed that, thx.




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