Sunday, September 28, 2008

Run BASIC for Windows, Mac and Linux

Tonight I am pleased to mention that we posted Run BASIC v1.0.1 beta 3 for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux (tested on Ubuntu). This is our first ever release of software for Linux, although people have been successfully using the Windows version using Wine.

It shouldn't take more than a couple of weeks to finalize v1.0.1 and release it. If you haven't had a look at Run BASIC check out the site. Make sure to watch the videos posted there to get a complete sense of just how easy web programming can be.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Eating my own dog food

Run BASIC comes with a bunch of example programs, one of which is a wiki called runWiki. It's about two pages long and is remarkable for what it does in those two pages, including the use of the SQLite database to store pages.

One of my customers (Neal) took that wiki and added a bunch of cool stuff to it like user accounts and many more formatting tags.

Now I've decided to take Neal's version of my original runWiki and use it to host a site for a civic group in the town of Ashland, Massachusetts where I live. It went live last weekend to coincide with the annual Ashland Day faire. Check it out at

It's a pretty simple site which will get more sophisticated as we go. The beautiful thing is that it acts as a vehicle for producing runWiki3. I can customize it to my hearts content since I have all the source code in BASIC, the people's language. ;-)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Free version of Run BASIC

One thing that has been lacking in our effort to promote our Run BASIC web programming system is a free version. In fact there is no time limited trial either. This has been mostly because we have been unsure what would be the best way to do it.

What we've decided on is when Run BASIC v1.0.1 is released soon for Windows, Mac and Linux we will also release a free version. This free version will be for personal use instead of being a web application server. Users of the free Run BASIC will be able to create projects and use any features of the language, but they will not be able to serve applications. This will allow them to experiment and see if Run BASIC meets their needs. If it does and hosting the application is in the cards then an upgrade to the server version is available for $59.95, or hosting service can be purchased at

Comments and suggestions are most welcome.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Out of control!

On a Java project that I work on part time we use the Eclipse IDE, which is a power tool for Java programming. Java itself gets hard to deal with once your software gets to a certain size, and Eclipse tries to do a lot of the hard work for you. Java would be unusable without such tools.

On the flipside to this, we had been using an older version of Eclipse. Ultimately we decided to upgrade to a newer version (but not the latest) because we wanted to use Subversion instead of CVS for our source code control.

One of my colleages decided to attack the upgrade and document what was needed for everyone to use the new version. It seemed like it took him many days to figure it all out. The new version didn't look too much difference on the surface, but I kept hearing groans from him. Clearly something wasn't going well, so I went over and asked him what was the matter. His answer was simply, "I can't figure out how to do things that I used to know how to do!" The new software was getting bigger and more complicated.

There's a balance to strike when developing software. It's hard to make software easy to use while also adding new features.