Re: 8-bit education
"One of the underlying problems with the way we teach coding etc. is we don't actually need lots of mediocre programmers. What we actually need is a small number of excellent ones."
This is why Computer Science/Studies should be a core science subject in secondary school like maths, physics, biology and chemistry. Most students will never progress very far in any of them but will at least have a basic understanding. The bright and interested ones will go onto A levels and maybe even a related degree at university.
Those reading who are old enough might remember CECIL from O/A level Computer Studies when the subject was first being introduced to schools. A sort of assembly language that taught the basics despite having no direct practical use at all. That gave me the background to play with Z80 assembly when I'd saved up enough to buy a Video Genie (TRS-80 model 1, Level II clone). Other in my A level class played with 6502 on the schools Commodore PET. (Yes, singular, one PET for the whole school of 1100 pupils)
Back then, there were 16 of us in the entire school doing O level Computer Studies. In 6th form, there were 9 doing A level computer studies, and there were two other local secondary schools feeding our 6th form, so 9 people out of a potential pool of about 3000.