TidyBlocks: Questions About TidyBlocks

Our first post described the history of TidyBlocks so far. In this post we'd like to answer a few of the questions people have asked.

Is TidyBlocks an RStudio product?

No. The first version was developed by Maya Gans while she was a summer intern, but TidyBlocks is a free-standing open source project.

Does TidyBlocks use R?

No. We set out to create something that would run entirely in the browser without a back-end server, and R does not run in the browser (not even with WebAssembly).

Does TidyBlocks generate R code?

No, but it could. While Version 1 generated executable JavaScript directly, Version 2 produces JSON that is then translated into runnable code objects. Generating R or Python that could be copied and pasted into some other system would be straightforward, but from a teaching point of view we think it would be better to get learners to use those systems directly once they have learned what they're trying to do.

What license does TidyBlocks use?

The Hippocratic License, which allows it to be used for anything that doesn't violate basic human rights laws. (If what you're teaching or the way you're teaching it violates the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, we'd rather not be involvd.)

How does the project make decisions?

Maya Gans, Justin Singh, and Greg Wilson are responsible for reviewing and merging pull requests, prioritizing issues, and deploying updated versions. For the moment they make decisions by consensus, but if we gain more regular contributors, we will start using Martha's Rules to give everyone involved an equal voice.

How can I contribute?

We're glad you asked:

Where can I contribute?

Please use our GitHub repository to file issues and submit pull requests. We also have a Slack channel for regular contributors.

— Greg Wilson / 2020-07-27