Sniff is a "Scratch-like" programming language that's designed to help Scratchers move gently from Scratch to more conventional languages. They can start writing programs, without having to learn a new language because Sniff is based on Scratch. They learn a little more about variables, compiling, syntax errors (!), and they can have fun controlling real hardware while they're doing it.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Release 28: And About Time too...

We normally seem to push out a release every month or so, with some new drivers and a few fixes and optimisations. However since the massive Microbit push back in April we've got almost 3 months without an update. I'm blaming end of school year burn out!

So here we have release 28. To be honest, its been such a long release cycle some of the thing that have gone into it seem like ancient history. There are lots of updates, and fixes for Microbit that just missed the last release, including code for the demos. It should also be a little faster.

jsniff has seen a lot of work. This lets you compile sniff programs to javascript and embed them in a web page. We've been using this internally for a fairly major application that we'll announce soon. If you compile with "jsniff -S xxx.sniff" it will include code to load and save files to a web server for permanent storage, so you can make really advanced web apps. There's a bit of work you need to do server side, but we'll document that soon. If you get a compiler error about "blacklist"ing when compiling with jsniff then you need to make a minor mod to your emscripten install - check the error line which should specific a line of code in the emscripten code... just edit that file, and delete the two lines and you're good to go again. More details later...

If you use the Arduino ethernet shield we've made a change to the way the ip address is specified. Previously this was stored in eeprom, but to increase portability you need to add this to your code. Check the examples/Embedded/webclient example to see how.

Finally we added support for Philips Hue light bulbs!! This is lots of fun, as you can make your own devices to turn your lights on and off. This is still a pretty basic implementation, and we'll probably add more to it in the future

There's a few other odds and ends in there too, but head over to the downloads page and try it out!

Incidentally "and about time too" is the title of Bernie Marsden's first solo album from 1979.

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