May 26, 2010
News - Enginursday: Visually Pro…
about a year ago
Ladder Logic. As someone who writes long, complex PLC programs for manufacturing facilities, I’ve always thought of Arduino’s as little toy PLCs. Naturally, I think it would be interesting to have a simple Ladder Logic editor, or Function Block, or all the IEC 61131-3 languages. I daily switch back and forth programming the same types of controls in Ladder and Structured Text and while text is much more compact, I find I can grasp a line of logic more quickly seeing it in ladder, as opposed to the exact same line in text.
But visual programming is only half the benefit, visual debugging by watching your code execute in real time is much nicer in ladder than in text. At least with most PLCs, this ability is available in either language. As far as I know there is no way to watch Arduino code execute. Ladder, combined with the ability to watch code execute in real time would go a long way to helping people learn to program.
Lastly, Ladder Logic is sometimes seen as simple, but more advanced editors support: arrays, structs, subroutines, functions, objects with methods & properties (private & public), pointers, interrupts, events…
No public wish lists :(
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