Blockly Q2 2023 Newsletter - v10.0.0 is available!

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Maribeth Bottorff

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Jun 29, 2023, 1:54:49 PM6/29/23
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Blockly Newsletter

Q2 2023

Key Highlights & Announcements

Blockly v10 is here! This quarter we’ve edged closer to 100% TypeScript in the core repo: blocks have been converted and generators are not far behind. We’ve also improved performance in multiple scenarios and added APIs to customize Blockly in new ways.


  • The angle, multiline text, and color fields have become plugins. Removing these less-commonly used fields will make the core library lighter.  If you use them, you can start switching over now as they will be removed from core in v11. Read more information in the READMEs for the new plugins.

  • The Generator classes have changed. We’ve made some breaking changes to how Generators store block generator functions, the operator precedence Order values, and how you import a generator if you’re using script tags. As usual, we will keep the old APIs live for one major release cycle before removing them. Read more here, here, and here.

  • New APIs for customization: We added support for custom icons and custom input types. Icons are the visual doodads that modify or annotate a block, like comments or warnings. You can now add your own icons to a block; for example, to show a breakpoint in a debugger.

  • Other breaking changes, features, and bug fixes: Check out the release notes for more information on everything that was changed or added this quarter.


Blockly Summit recap: We hosted the 2023 Blockly Summit in-person and online in June. The video recordings and slides from this summit will be posted on our summit site soon. It was great to see all of you and we look forward to next year!


What’s Ahead

The Blockly team continues to work to improve our codebase, documentation, community, and partnerships. In Q3, this includes:


  • Making core Blockly smaller through modularization and continuing to invest in plugins

  • Adding more automated testing

  • Refining our position on education and technical best practices for block-based coding

  • Deepening our understanding of new and existing partners’ work

Spotlight 

New team member: Welcome Eric Blackmon to the Blockly team! Eric is joining us as a Technical Program Manager and will focus on helping us refine our test and release processes. Eric has lived in 5 cities in the past 3 years and currently lives in Philadelphia.


Blockly intern: Welcome Cesar Ades as our Blockly summer intern! Cesar is a rising senior at Northwestern University near Chicago. He will be joining us for the summer and working on building a minimap plugin. Cesar recently got into rock climbing!


Your plugin: Want us to spotlight a Blockly plugin you’ve made? Follow the instructions here and we’ll add a link to your plugin on our Plugin showcase page, and may mention it in a future edition of this newsletter.


Help Wanted

Sign up to take part in Blockly user experience studies! These studies help us learn more about what’s important to you as a Blockly developer. If you’re interested, follow these steps:


  1. Visit the Google User Experience Research Study page here. Don’t worry that it says “Android App developers” – this study is for all Blockly developers!

  2. Click on the “Sign Up” button on that page.

  3. Fill out the form with your information. When you see the question "Which of the following Google products and services do you use regularly?", feel free to skip this section if you are specifically interested in Blockly-related studies.


After signing up, you’ll be added to the pool of potential participants for future Blockly studies. Your information will be kept confidential and used exclusively for research purposes.


Are you interested in contributing to Blockly? Here are a few issues we could use some help on! To get started, comment on the issue on Github to tell us you’re working on it, and let us know if you need any help. If you’re new, check out our contributing to Blockly docs.



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Maribeth Bottorff

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Jun 29, 2023, 2:04:27 PM6/29/23
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Reposting in a format Groups won't destroy (sorry!):
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