Thomas Ploch, I love the discussions this article generates. And here I was about to not even post it a few days ago. Thanks for contributing to its success and for reading it in detail enough to form an opinion. There’s always a chance that I am wrong, so let me put that out there first. But here’s how I see it.

Neither Apple or Lego or all (most) them coding schools do what they do out of the kindness of their hearts. They all generate profit, some at some scale — Bootcamps for instance. Apple is also being very smart about Playgrounds. Teaching Swift — their own language, enables the smarter kids to actually produce a few decent apps which then contributes to the Apple brand, success, and possibly generate revenue as well. Lego already had 2 different robotics projects, both of which very expensive, and mainly used in schools and clubs, but they decided to launch a third project-for retail only. For profit.

But here’s what I wish. I wish you were right. I so wish you were, and if it turns out in the future that you were, please come back and tell me “I told you so.

The part about exposing people to code early — like I mentioned, I don’t believe there is empirical evidence to show that’s needed. Do we expose kids to medicine at the age of 10, hoping they’ll become doctors? No. Yet, we have fantastic doctors all around the world, because they grew up seeing adults do it, and decided it’s what resonates with them and their abilities. You mentioned music, but — and I actually pointed this out — music is different. You really need to start early to become a Mozart or a Paganini. Expertise in music comes from talent and muscle memory. Music is also static, whereas programming is ever-changing. Someone who learnt Fortran 50-some years ago in school, would find it very difficult to hit the ground running in Node or Rails. :)

Writer of code, blogs and things that live on the web. Pragmatic doer, Lego fan, Mac user, cool nerd. JavaScript and Flutter enthusiast. editor.

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