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Programming Games Idle

Learning HTML Through a Board Game 34

Posted by samzenpus
from the roll-the-dice-and-close-the-tags dept.
An anonymous reader writes "cHTeMeLe is a board game about writing HTML5 code. In cHTeMeLe, players endorse their favorite web browser (Firefox, Safari, Chrome, Opera, or IE) and then score points by correctly laying out HTML tags, while also trying to bug or crash their opponents' code. From the article: 'Despite cHTeMeLe's technical theme, its developers claim you don't need any web programming experience to play. The game takes web design standards and boils them down into game rules that even children can learn. To help less technical players keep everything straight, the tag cards use syntax highlighting that different parts of code have unique colors — just like an Integrated Developer Environment. No one is going to completely pick up HTML5 purely by playing cHTeMeLe, but it does have some educational value for understanding basic tags and how they fit together.'"
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Learning HTML Through a Board Game

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  • I will forget this, even though I want it. I hope there is another article when there's an English translation.
    • by spadadot (879731)
      The english translation is meant to be available at the same time as the (final) french version. This will be no more than 4-6 weeks from now.
  • by Theoden (121862) on Monday October 08, 2012 @09:32AM (#41584263)

    ...you guys ALWAYS make me play as IE! I'm not playing ever again! Pft!

  • by concealment (2447304) on Monday October 08, 2012 @09:33AM (#41584269) Homepage Journal

    I've now been around long enough to have seen a few dozen projects like this pop up, vanish within five years, and be completely gone without a trace in ten. They're not relevant because they're not effective.

    To get people to learn to code HTML, get them a project they want to work on, and then guide them through the HTML stage to using a script to generate that HTML. By itself, HTML/CSS coding is a dead-end skill. The real goal should be the web application or site and how it's going to do something that people actually need.

    Clever little games may seem to increase participation, but they really distract from the actual task and attract people who do not have the mental state to pursue the other skills they will need to further themselves along this path.

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      I don't see why people shouldn't start learning HTML through an editor. OK, so I learned it by hand, but back then there were no editors, that doesn't make the manual approach better, it only made it necessary and taught me to find the >> keys without looking (and to type some entities...) But I'm equally at a loss to tell what a game is supposed to help. If you want to teach kids about nesting and containers, use cardboard boxes.

    • by Rhaban (987410) on Monday October 08, 2012 @10:30AM (#41584965)

      I think it's intended as a real game, not a way to learn html5

    • by ljw1004 (764174)

      I've now been around long enough to have seen a few dozen projects like this pop up, vanish within five years, and be completely gone without a trace in ten.

      Really? You've seen other board games built around the syntax of some computer language? Please tell me about them! I'd love to play them. I had thought this game was innovative and interesting, but if there's a whole collection of similar board games, I'd love to get into them. Didn't find anything on boardgamegeek.com.

      • Really? You've seen other board games built around the syntax of some computer language? Please tell me about them! I'd love to play them. I had thought this game was innovative and interesting, but if there's a whole collection of similar board games, I'd love to get into them. Didn't find anything on boardgamegeek.com.

        True (to my knowledge anyway), few boardgames use the syntax of computer languages, but there are many board games that use programming as a core mechanic in the game. The game of Rambots [boardgamegeek.com] comes to mind as an example.

        Perhaps games using computer languages are more suited to computers in the first place? In that case, I can point to The Schemaverse [schemaverse.com] based on SQL, and Code Hero [kickstarter.com] based on Javascript.

    • The Slashdot headline frames this in terms of "Learning HTML", but it's worth noting that the creators of the game don't view it that way. In their FAQ [ulule.com], they say:

      Why "almost educative"? The game might have some educative values, because if you play it you learn things about HTML and the bass rules of programming. But the aim of the game is not to be "educative", it's first to be played, to be fun and enjoyed by everyone. You can eventually learn something but it's a plus... not the ultimate goal.

  • Not only will this stop kids from ever touching code again, it will also condition them to hate games generally.
  • by Big Hairy Ian (1155547) on Monday October 08, 2012 @09:38AM (#41584315)
    and you'll have another use for the body tag :)
  • by Ukab the Great (87152) on Monday October 08, 2012 @09:39AM (#41584323)

    Go to jail. Do not collect $200.

    • by Chemisor (97276)

      That's a little harsh. Jail should be reserved for really evil tags like blink.

      • by TheCarp (96830)

        wow jail for blink tags? Talk about soft! I was thinking more along the lines of "rendition"

      • by tlhIngan (30335)

        Jail should be reserved for really evil tags like blink.

        Oh, phew. I don't use <blink> anymore.

        Me, I do my blinking in more harmless tags. Like <font>, <div> and the like.

        (style="text-decoration:blink" - for those who don't want to put it in their css files.)

        Can't remember when <blink> was actually deprecated in favor of its CSS counterpart...

  • Do we really want to encourage kids to write non-standards-compliant code?

  • HTML is best learned through trial and error. I never really understood the concept of the CSS or HTML until I began visualize a web page as just a stack of transparency paper that is moved around by CSS. Learning the tags alone won't do any good. You have to interact with the elements produced by the tags to really understand how HTML works.
  • I would love to see a game like this be actually fun to play. I've seen so many "educational" games that are just plane boring because they try to mix education and fun without actually integrating them. Here's hoping this one works out.
  • Does it include the blink tag? DOES IT!??!?!?!?
  • by kiriath (2670145) on Monday October 08, 2012 @10:46AM (#41585177)

    If you choose IE you loose automatically correct?

  • by magic maverick (2615475) on Monday October 08, 2012 @11:47AM (#41586019) Homepage Journal
    <html><head><title>Crash MSIE</title></head>
    <body>
    <input type crash>
    <script>for(x in document.write){document.write(x);}</script>
    <script>for (x in open);</script>
    <style>*{position:relative}</style><table><input></table>
    </body></html>

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