Having the programming interface for this device run through a simulator in a browser makes this an extraordinarily accessible device. You don't even need the hardware to see what your code will do.
However, with the BBC distributing then to every 11- and 12-year-old, there should be no shortage of devices for some time to come.
Looks like next summer's lemonade stands will be selling everything from home security to self-driving roller-skates.
The BBC revealed today the programming environment for the Micro:bit, created with help from Microsoft. This web-based tool allows users to program and simulate tasks before transferring the data to the device. And since it runs in the browser, users can program the Micro:bit on nearly any device. The Micro:bit is the BBC’s latest attempt to allow British school children to explore the world of computing. The tiny Raspberry Pi-like device is the spiritual successor to the BBC Micro PC that the broadcaster released in the ’80s. The BBC will give away 1 million Micro:bit devices to school children across Britain. The plan is to give one to every 11- and 12-year-old in the country’s schools. After this lot is exhausted, the non-profit created by the BBC will license the Micro:bit to companies to make additional Micro:bit devices.