Here at Embedit we’ve always preferred to use the official Scratch 2.0 instead of alternatives like Google Blockly, Snap, and so on. While Scratch is harder to get working on our hardware we believe it provides the most complete experience for kids to learn coding. It has a very clean interface, and lots of media assets (backgrounds, sprites, and sounds) which makes it much more fun and clear for young kids. The difference we saw in kids ability to complete experiments improved drastically when we made the jump from Scratch 1.4 to 2. Frankly most of the Scratch alternatives are stuck at about the quality of Scratch 1.4, which just isn’t good enough.
Last week Google and the MIT Scratch team announced plans to work on a new version that they call “Scratch Blocks”. This version uses some of blockly’s code base and most importantly now works on html5 instead of flash. This makes it mobile friendly and should work on nearly any web browser. Flash is slow and doesn’t work on all devices, which has hampered our progress on getting the PiSoC + Scratch combination working on as many platforms as we wanted. This has been a big challenge for us getting on chromebook, and we are still looking for the best path forward on that platform.
I hope they bring all of Scratch 2.0’s media assets and media editing abilities to this new version of Scratch. To me, that is one of the most important things that separates Scratch from the competition. Once they make a little more progress on Scratch Blocks you can be sure we will be figuring out how to get the PiSoC on it!