I went back for more.
The Apple IIe’s BASIC system greeted me in the same way it did before (after some embarrassing mistakes putting the disk in the wrong way and getting no BASIC screen to pop up). And I came prepared this time. I had gone through another couple chapters of the Basic BASIC by James Coan, writing out programs in pen on notebook pages. While writing these programs, I tried the flowchart method Coan suggests to organize the information that would go into the program, before quickly abandoning it for my own information categorization methods. But my own methods sadly didn’t work. The programs that I tried to write based on the sample problems were wrong — I found the even numbered answers to the sample programs in the back to check my work. When it came time to actually program these written lines, even the odd numbered problem answers that I thought were correct produced wildly inaccurate results. Total, only two of the programs that I wrote on my own worked.
I cannot quite figure out what I’m doing wrong — whether it’s my lack of familiarity with the syntax functions or with the order in which the commands have to appear and be processed — and so I am going to immerse myself into how I would be taught BASIC if I were operating the Apple IIe in 1983, when it was released. I have a number of resources from the 1980s that were designed as instructional materials for teachers and students about BASIC programs, and I’ll be spending the last part of the class trying to learn what I can about the successful programming mind-frame, turning the journey into part of my final project.