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Announcing Small Basic Online 1.0 - Public Preview

Please kick the tires of our new Public Preview of Small Basic Online 1.0! What's up on our website now is Small Basic Online 0.91 (our second SBO release). The goal was to move toward an open source version of Small Basic Online (and eventually Small Basic Desktop as well), and this (SBO 1.0) is it!

Omar T and Hannah Smiltneek created this prototype for us!


Note that this list is What's New in comparison to Small Basic Online 0.91. We're not working toward parity with Small Basic Desktop until after Small Basic Online 1.0 ships.

Here's what's new (not in Small Basic Online 0.91):

  1. Modern look and feel that is still colorful with big, simple buttons
  2. New Libraries pane on the left to explore each object and method (this gets the user even more familiar with the Visual Studio UI structure)
  3. Hover Hints: hover over an object or method to get a description
  4. New Debugger
  5. Save & Open files - This is an improvement over our current SBO and a step toward parity with SB Desktop! You can now save your files locally. And...
  6. TXT file format - We're introducing the idea of saving and loading TXT files instead of SB files. This makes file sharing, edits, and uploads easier, especially when you switch back and forth between using SB Online and SB Desktop. (Note that SB Desktop won't support this on that end until the release of Small Basic 2.)

In addition, we are able to build from the GitHub repo to create a Desktop version as well. That's an important infrastructure step. We plan to release this version (currently in public preview) as Small Basic Online 1.0 (replacing our SBO 0.91). After that, we plan to work toward Small Basic Desktop parity and release Small Basic 2.0 to both Online and Desktop, simultaneously, from the same code base!

The new Libraries pane feature:

Features of the new Debugger:

QUESTION: What is SuperBasic?

That's just the project name. The product/official name is "Small Basic Online 1.0." (Technically the project name is really SuperBasic2.) =^)

What's the difference between SuperBasic1 and SuperBasic2? Well, we're starting to get into the weeds, but they were both prototypes for SB Online 1.0. SuperBasic1 ( was open source and introduced the Debugger. SuperBasic2 finished adding in the libraries and added the other new features (Modern look, Libraries pane, Hover Hints, Save & Open, TXT file format). That's our current prototype for public preview:

QUESTION: Where is this prototype/preview going?

This preview will launch on as Small Basic Online 1.0. It will replace the current version of Small Basic Online (version 0.91). But first, we're going to fix the known issues. So the Import and Publish features will be working by then (for example).

QUESTION: What about Small Basic Desktop?

After releasing Small Basic Online 1.0 (with big improvements over SBO 0.91... and even some features that improve over Small Basic Desktop), our goal is to release versions of Small Basic Online (between the 1.0 and 2.0 release) that gives us parity with Small Basic Desktop. Then, once ready, we will release Small Basic 2.0, with both the Desktop and Online versions, both from the same codebase (open source here: So that means SB Desktop will have the Debugger, the modern UI, the Libraries pane, etc. And SB Online will have parity with Desktop. We're already making great progress toward this goal, where we're able to build a desktop app from our GitHub repo. So some major infrastructure is already built for our 2.0 release. One thing to note is that we plan to have extensions in Small Basic 2, but that would only be for Desktop. That basically means you'd have to have downloaded SB Desktop in order to use extensions. But I think that's the basic expectation anyway.


Here is our list of known issues with this public preview:

  1. Long initial load time.
  2. The Import and Publish buttons aren't connected yet. We plan to do that when we integrate the prototype into our website.
  3. The turtle doesn't show on the Microsoft Edge browser. Google Chrome works fine.
  4. The cursor isn't active in the TextWindow (you have to click into it). NOW FIXED!
  5. See the full list of known issues on GitHub:

We plan to fix the known issues.


What we could use your help with:

  1. Help us find more bugs/issues! Just reply below with the issues you find. We'll add them to GitHub. Or, if you're comfortable with GitHub (and have the time), you can add the issues here:
  2. We need to ensure parity with Small Basic Online 0.91 (the version on our website now... Please help us compare the two to make sure we've reached parity! (Desktop parity will be coming later.)

Thank you in advance for your help!

Small and Basically still around after over 10 years of Small Basic,

Ed Price