Alice Animation Beta testing at Pittsburgh FLL Tournament


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Alice is a programming environment designed to introduce novice programmers to computer science.  Students are given the necessary tools to build 3D virtual worlds while learning to write code.  These virtual worlds are canvases for creating games and performing tasks and animations.  Students populate a 3D scene with objects (characters, scenery, etc.) and, with the use of a code editor, write program code to define actions performed by/on these objects. This use of program visualization allows students to immediately see how their programs run, as well as easily understand the relationship between the lines of code and the actions of objects in the scene.


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Animation of 3D objects provides an engaging and highly creative activity for students from middle school to college.  Underlying the animation context is the intent to introduce fundamental programming concepts, such as sequencing, decision making and repetition. Younger students develop an intuitive understanding of object-oriented concepts such as classes, objects, methods and inheritance. With experience, older students develop a more in-depth understanding of classes, objects, methods, and inheritance by applying these skills and concepts in a transition to a professional, object-oriented production language, such as Java or Python.


Our primary goal is to enable students to acquire problem solving and computational thinking skills in the context of authoring animations. Specifically, these skills include:

In Phase 1, we will focus on providing the online instructional materials necessary to make it possible for younger students without prior knowledge of Alice or computer programming to successfully create beginner level animation programs.  These instructional materials will include everything from downloading, installing, and running Alice3, to learning how to use the system, to creating a virtual world scene, to learning fundamental programming constructs.

In addition, we will provide a web infrastructure to support submitting and hosting Alice3 programs on  These capabilities will enable us to create and test-run a pilot Alice Animation Festival, ideally in coordination with the FIRST LEGO League.



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Alice Webinars coming Spring 2011!


Carnegie Mellon’s Robotics Academy will be offering webinars on how to get started with programming in Alice. More details about the webinar coming soon! 


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How to download Alice

Alice can be found at


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Alice Training Materials

There are several alice programming materials available. Below you will find links on books and tutorials for Alice:

We are developing training materials for Alice. Click here to register to receive updates on the FIRE Project!


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