Minecraft is one of the biggest gaming success stories, being one of the most popular games ever since its release in 2011. And now, Minecraft will teach kids how to code, a feat made possible through the partnership of Microsoft with Code.org, a company focused on teaching children the basics of coding in a fun and more intuitive way.
The building game and cultural phenomenon known as Minecraft already has something similar to coding within itself through the use of the material known as redstone. Through the use of redstone circuitry and other materials, players were able to create amazing structures and even mini computers within the game. Mini computers only the point of view of their functional capabilities, the structure of said computer sometimes reaching the size of the Empire State Building.
Games that take a shot at teaching coding in a more simple way have already been launched, one of these games being The Human Resource Machine by Kyle Gabler, the creator of the critically acclaimed gamed World of Goo and Little Inferno. The concept of these types of games is building a functioning program by linking snippets of code together to form a complex machine capable of running simple tasks in order to progress through the game.
Code.org is the company behind the campaign called The Hour of Code, a global event that tries to bring coding to people in a more interesting fashion, having released until now a Star Wars version, llinked to the upcoming new Star Wars film, The Force Awakens. By partnering with Microsoft and the creators of Minecraft, Mojang, they built a 2D Minecraft environment that challenges players to create a code program that allows them to explore, gather materials and craft by using tiny snippets of code.
Diverse challenges are presented through this Minecraft coding tutorial, and after completing them, users are to explore the world at their own leisure by using the coding knowledge they acquired through said tutorial.
Even President Obama has joined in the Hour of Code, along with over 100 million people around the globe, using fun tutorials and programs created by the non-profit company Code.org. Considering that there are over 95 million Minecraft players around, this partnership with Microsoft will surely boost the numbers of participants.
Considering that now Code.org has a new ally in their fight to spark creativity in people around the world and now even Minecraft will teach kids how to code, in the hope of making people more interested in computer science, the future is looking brighter and brighter. This program will be released in conjecture with the Computer Science Education Week (December 7 – 14) but if you want to test the Minecraft inspired tutorial now, it is already available on Code.org.