What the heck is a Vitruvian Phrog ?

I can do an occasional company announcement on my blog, right? This is a big one! I’m not covering a lot of background on KPL (Kids Programming Language) with this post; www.kidsprogramminglanguage.com is a great place to catch up if KPL is new to you.

KPL v 2 release candidate details

KPL v 2 has dependencies on the .NET Framework 2.0 and DirectX 9.0c, each available as free downloads from those links. They should be installed before installing KPL v 2. The KPL v 2 download is available from this link, and is 27 megabytes in size. That setup.exe will optionally download the .NET framework 2.0 if it is not already installed on your machine. A stand-alone setup program which includes both the .NET Framework 2.0 and DirectX 9.0c is available upon request. As a release candidate, this KPL v 2 build will work until November 15, 2006 – nearly four months.

The Future of KPL

KPL has been available as educational freeware for a year now and has been downloaded well over 100,000 times. To ensure KPL’s success, distribution and longevity, we knew we had to figure out how to get more resources behind it than it has had thus far. Our schedules, website and content have not been what we’d like them to be this year, because a very few of us are doing what we can with KPL at the same time that we do consulting and contract work that pay bills and put food on the table for our families. We hope you’ll find the plan as exciting as we do.

Let me start by saying that KPL v 1.1 will remain available, free, and community supported exactly as it is today. A fully functional version of KPL v 2 will also be available, free and community supported. We certainly want KPL to remain available to schools, parents, students, hobbyists and beginners who can’t afford to pay for it. But we know that many people can afford to pay a little bit for it, and so our plan is to offer a commercial version of KPL which will help to support all versions of KPL, including the freeware versions. The price is still being finalized, but our goal is to offer it for less than the price of a single console or PC game.

Partnerships are just beginning

Making a real company and a real product out of KPL also makes us more viable to established companies who might partner with us, because they can better rely on our continued success and existence. We are glad to announce we’re already working with the folks at www.CommunityServer.org, as they put together a new and much improved website for us, which will have much of the same functionality that you can see on their own site. The new site will offer to KPL users much better threaded discussion forums, file upload and download areas, image galleries, blogging, and many other important community-centric features.

We are working on a particularly exciting partnership which we’ll announce soon – stay tuned for that one!

The Vitruvian Phrog

In part because of user feedback that Kid’s Programming Language was interesting to a lot more than just kids, we’ve come up with a new name and new branding, which we will use to turn KPL v 2 into a new product:

The Vitruvian Phrog!

In September, KPL v 2 will be rebranded and launched as Phrogram, with the new site at http://www.Phrogram.com, running alongside of and linking back and forth with www.KidsProgrammingLanguage.com. We hope your first impression is of fun. We certainly have lots of fun things planned for the name and the image.

The Three Versions of Phrogram

Phrogram Express will be a completely free version, with no time limit on its usage
Phrogram will be a consumer upgrade to Express, costing less than a single console or PC game
Phrogram Academic will be a discounted version of Phrogram for students and teachers

The Phrogram Express product will be only slightly simpler than the Phrogram commercial product – we will detail those differences shortly. Phrogram and Phrogram Academic purchasers will have access to some content earlier than Phrogram Express users, and certain student- and teacher-oriented materials will only be available to Academic users.

As always, we’d like to hear your feedback!

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5 thoughts on “What the heck is a Vitruvian Phrog ?

  1. [...] Learn how to Phrogram. No, that’s not a typo. “Phrogram” is the new name for the Kid’s Programming Language (KPL) developed by Morrison-Schwartz. KPL was designed to help first-time programmers have fun learning to code. It has attracted a wide interest from kids, parents, and educators worldwide who have downloaded KPL over 100,000 times since its release. Robert Scoble first introduced me to the creators of KPL last year because he knew I was working on Visual Studio Express and Coding4Fun. So I downloaded their free product and took a look. I was immediately blown away by how easy it was to get started with KPL. I even invited Jon Schwartz to write some fun articles on Coding4Fun showing off how KPL can be used to build some classic arcade games. One great thing about KPL is that it allows you to take the programs you write in KPL and immedietaly see what the equivelent C# or Visual Basic syntax would look like. In this way a user who starts out learning with KPL can gradually move on to building more advanced applications by graduating to another tool such as Visual Studio Express. KPL PhrogramAs Jonathan points out, it’s time to change the name from Kid’s Programming Language to Phrogram. The fact is that it’s not just for kids – if you hang out on the KPL forums you’ll read about many adults who have also used KPL to learn programming, which is simply awesome. And of course, even some kids don’t want to play with something that says “kid” the name. When we are young, we all strive to be more like adults… and as we get older, we wish we were kids again. <g> I think Phrogram is a great name, and I love the new logo (see below). It’s called the Vitruvian Phrog (there’s got to be a “DaVinci Code” joke in there somewhere). But I still have one question – hey Jon, how are we supposed to pronounce Phrogram? Does it rhyme with “Program”, or should we say “Frog”-ram?     [...]

  2. Brian Keller says:

    Congrats on the new name, Jon! I LOVE the logo. :-)

    Brian Keller

  3. [...] SQL Server Express SP1 CTP and SQL Server Express CTP Tools » Bookmark on del.icio.us No, that’s not a typo. “Phrogram” is the new name for the Kid’sProgramming Language (KPL) developed by Morrison-Schwartz. KPL was designed to help first-time programmers have fun learning to code. It has attracted a wide interest from kids, parents, and educators worldwide who have downloaded KPL over 100,000 times since its release. Robert Scoble first introduced me to the creators of KPL last year because he knew I was working on Visual Studio Express and Coding4Fun. So I downloaded their free product and took a look. I was immediately blown away by how easy it was to get started with KPL. I even invited Jon Schwartz to write some fun articles on Coding4Fun showing off how KPL can be used to build some classic arcade games. One great thing about KPL is that it allows you to take the programs you write in KPL and immedietaly see what the equivelent C# or Visual Basic syntax would look like. In this way a user who starts out learning with KPL can gradually move on to building more advanced applications by graduating to another tool such as Visual Studio Express. KPL PhrogramAs Jonathan points out, it’s time to change the name from Kid’s Programming Language to Phrogram. The fact is that it’s not just for kids – if you hang out on the KPL forums you’ll read about many adults who have also used KPL to learn programming, which is simply awesome. And of course, even some kids don’t want to play with something that says “kid” the name. When we are young, we all strive to be more like adults… and as we get older, we wish we were kids again. <g> I think Phrogram is a great name, and I love the new logo (see below). It’s called the Vitruvian Phrog (there’s got to be a “DaVinci Code” joke in there somewhere). But I still have one question – hey Jon, how are we supposed to pronounce Phrogram? Does it rhyme with ”Program”, or should we say ”Frog”-ram?     [...]

  4. [...] Brian Keller had a post on his blog where I found out that the people behind KPL or Kid’s Programming Language are changing the name to Phrogram. Jon Schwartz talks about version 2.0, the new logo and some details about the future of Phrogram at his blog. [...]

  5. [...] Brian Keller had a post on his blog where I found out that the people behind KPL or Kid’s Programming Language are changing the name to Phrogram. Jon Schwartz talks about version 2.0, the new logo and some details about the future of Phrogram at his blog. A lot of people are using existing versions of this software to teach kids and young adults (of all ages) to program and have fun doing it. Check it out if you are looking for a simple to learn language in an easy to use development environment. Published Thursday, August 03, 2006 1:19 AM by AlfredTh [...]

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