Minsky Logo

a workshop led by Brian Silverman


Saturday, April 22, 2023, 10:00 am to noon EST


Everywhere via Zoom


$10 per person
Free for people who participated in the 2022 Virtual Logo Summer Institute

In the 1970s Seymour Papert was working on the earliest versions of the Logo programming language. He had introduced drawing with a "turtle" as one of the central activities to do in a Logo environment. Some of the turtles were mechanical robots. Others lived on computer screens.

In those days computers were large and had a tiny fraction of the computing power of the devices and systems we are familiar with today. Computer graphics was in its infancy. Available graphic computer screens were all prohibitively expensive. Marvin Minsky felt it would be good to have something smaller, simpler, and affordable. He designed and built a computer named TT2500 that supported an early and intriguing version of Logo.

In this workshop we will explore some of the history of that era and compare Minsky Logo with other versions of Logo, both historical and contemporary. We will introduce an online emulator of Minsky Logo that you can explore during the workshop and take away to investigate further on your own and with your students.

About the workshop leader:

Since the late 1970s, Brian Silverman has been involved in the invention of learning environments for children. His work includes dozens of LOGO versions, LogoWriter and MicroWorlds among them, Scratch, LEGO® robotics, TurtleArt, the PicoCricket, and the Phantom Fish Tank. Brian has been a Visiting Scientist at the MIT Media Lab, enjoys recreational math, and is a computer scientist and master tinkerer. He once even built a tic-tac-toe playing computer out of TinkerToys.