Design and Build-a-Bot

Although it felt a bit like Dreamweaver for bot-making, I enjoyed the approach that launchbot has achieved. So I’ve put it on my Design in Tech Report site as an experiment to see how it feels.

Click to go and play with it on

The way that the bot’s logic is constructed uses old-skool visual programming techniques.

Launchbot has that age-old problem that all visual programming languages have — which is a difficulty in scaling a graph-based representation.

Visual programming languages let the programmer sketch, point at, or demonstrate data relationships or transformations, rather than translate them into sequences of commands, pointers, and abstract symbols. These simplifications seem to promise to make programming easier, more reliable, and more accessible. However, making visual programming languages suitable for solving large programming problems often seems to require the very complexities VPLs try to remove or simplify. This is called the scaling-up problem. —IEEE 1995

That said, it tasted pretty good for the scope of experimentation I wanted to test. —JM