Gidget is now released: A debugging puzzle game for novice programmers
I’ve seen Michael Lee present two papers on Gidget at ICER, and they were both fascinating. Gidget is now moving out of the laboratory, and I’m eager to see what happens when lots of people get a chance to play with it. Andy Ko has a blog post about Gidget that explains some of the goals.
Hello Gidget Supporter!
We are happy to announce that Gidget has launched today! You, your friends, and your family members can now help Gidget debug faulty code to solve puzzles at helpgidget.org
Gidget is a game designed to teach computer programming concepts through debugging puzzles. Gidget the robot was damaged on its way to clean up a chemical spill and save the animals, so it is the players’ job to fix Gidget’s problematic code to complete all the missions. As the levels become more challenging, players can combine newly introduced concepts with previously used commands to solve the puzzles and progress through the game.
Gidget is the dissertation work of Michael J. Lee who is a PhD candidate at the University of Washington’s Information School. Prior to its public release, over 800 online participants played through various versions of the game, and over 60 teenagers played through the game and created their own levels during four summer camps in 2013 and 2014. Our research has shown that novice programmers of all ages become very engaged with the activity, and that they are able to create their own levels (i.e., create their own programs from scratch) successfully after playing through the game.
Please share widely and refer to the press release for more information. We hope you have fun playing the game, and appreciate your interest and support for Gidget.
Michael J. Lee and the rest of the Gidget Team
Michael J. Lee
PhD Candidate, Information School
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195-2840