Although I started my adventures in programming in Assembler (65c02, 68000) it was probably the discover of BASIC (I still remember it stands for "Beginners All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code"!) that showed my that computers could be fun (nerd alert!)
I used various forms of BASIC on a wide range of machines - Atom, BBC B, MSX, Oric, RML, ZX81 etc - before PCs became a more regular feature in my life and QuickBASIC was often a quick and easy way to get things done in the days of DOS. With the rise of Windows Visual Basic became the de facto way that many developers were first introduced to programming.
Time passed and the development environment got more complex and VB "grew up", gained some object oriented type features and became a member of the .Net family of languages. It was no longer an easy starting point for new developers - and languages like C# and Java became more prominent.
Well, that simple, easy to get started concept is back. And in keeping with the aim the name says it all - Small Basic. It's not trying to be big and clever, but as a good way for kids to get started and see results quickly.
In it's default form there are only 15 keywords - but even so it's petty capable. The development environment features all the things you'd expect from a modern platform such as Intellisense and context sensitive help. The neat this though is that it's an extensible environment so other developers can add features and capabilities to the base product to help it grow.
Check it out at the MSDN DevLabs (the same folks who bring you PopFly), read more at their blog and don't forget to check out their "Hello World"!
I wonder how long it'll take me to re-write "snake" ;)