Well, I would guess that such a tool does already exist, if not multiple times... The biggest problem I think is that such a tool never really got introduced to the business, so it isn't widely distributed. End users themselves are probably not motivated enough by themselves to find such a tool and try it out and employers probably either don't know it exists or don't really care either. That's just a really vague guess on my behalf though.
You find interest and commitment by looking at the results of the labour. Just the same as with every other thing. You look at a product (a program, game, piece of art, music, whatever) and think "Hey, I could do that too, couldn't I?" and if you have that thought, you're interested in learning about it. And so you start learning.
As I stated in other comment chains in this thread, I misread the article's intention. I thought the idea was to get more professional programmers out of it, rather than giving people who aren't really interested in it an idea of what it's about. I am totally fine with the latter.
Well, it is true to an extent that easier tools leads people to believe that they know more than they do, so I wasn't entirely wrong to panic a bit about this. But in the whole, I admit that I misread it and over-exaggerated the issue.
Yeah, another comment chain in this already helped me figure out that I misread the article's intention. I'm absolutely fine with people getting more acquainted with programming instead of it being this mystery science that makes you angry when it stops being magical and eats all your emails or something.
I do agree, starting with an IDE is a bad idea. A simple text editor and command line compiler is the best way to start as it cuts out all the other stuff that is only distracting at first. I wonder if there's any courses out there that actually start like this as I have never seen or heard of any myself.
Yeah, I think I was just failing with my faith in humanity there.
I've seen too many running heads on into programming through ludicrously simple drag and drop stuff and then coming at me pretending to know everything about programming, which caused me to be biased towards the worse...
I should have more exposure to normal people.
I guess it's another case of "right tools for the right job"?
I do admit that there seems to be a lack of tools to introduce people to do really simple stuff and nothing beyond. And if that's the goal for such simple tools as the article proposes, then I am fine with that.
I guess the article gave me the impression that there's not easy enough tools to create fully fledged programmers, rather than people who can create a couple of simple scripts for simple tasks.
Hmm, yeah, I admit that that's certainly true.
I'm not sure if creating special tools for that purpose is a good idea though, as it might just as well give a wrong idea about what people in the programming business do. But hey, I'm looking forward to be proven wrong.
It doesn't really take knowing where to start. I didn't know either when I began, I just picked a book that I found interesting and started reading it, following the examples in the book, etc.
Sadly I've made the opposite experience. I've tried to get a couple of people into programming, but it just didn't work out, even giving them a very simple start wasn't helping their interest. Sure, there's definitely people around there that are just waiting to be shown something until they can flourish, but I'm quite convinced that they'd make the start themselves sooner or later anyway. The fact that the tools aren't easy enough has nothing to do with this.
And you did prove my point quite nicely. This guy did have the commitment and interest to get acquainted with the tools and even pick up everything else himself to get further into programming. That's awesome! But just the same, this won't happen to everyone else and having easier tools doesn't make more people suddenly fall in love with programming.
It seems to me that a great deal of people have this idea in their heads that any and everyone is able to do any and everything. This is bollocks.
Furthermore, blaming the inability to get interested in something or to cross a certain difficulty barrier on the tools is just laughable.
If one can't take the first step in programming and get acquainted to the tools, he won't be able to make the later steps either. It takes commitment and interest. Reducing the first barrier won't bring a lot better programmers, it will bring in a lot more bad programmers that get stuck half way through and don't really help anyone.