Sunday, October 22, 2017
Home » Plug & Play » LocoRobo: A Robot Designed to Grow with a Child

LocoRobo: A Robot Designed to Grow with a Child

LocoRobo offers different levels of control for programmers of all ages and abilities. Photo courtesy of LocoRobo.
LocoRobo offers different levels of control for programmers of all ages and abilities. Photo courtesy of LocoRobo.

Another educational robot for children has entered the arena: LocoRobo. The basic version of the bot features ultrasonic sensors, differential drive, lithium ion batteries, LED lights, and a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) dongle for downloading code. The more expensive version of the robot also includes motor controllers, an accelerometer, and a gyroscope. Based on the Atmel ATmega32U4 micro controller, the both bots are Arduino compatible.

Unlike many of its competitors in the education market, LocoRobo was also designed to grow with the child. Initially, a little kid can control the robot using a mobile app for Android and iOS devices. The app allows kids to select and customize simple functions, in a way that resembles the steps and loops of a real programming language. When they are ready for more complexity, C, Python, Matlab, and Javascript libraries can be downloaded to the robot using the BLE dongle. Open-source APIs in C, Python, Matlab and Node.js are also available for kids who really want to dive in to coding.

Lessons plans — which include example code, videos and challenges involving an onscreen robot in a virtual environment — provide teachers with a solid platform from which to lead their students. Ultimately, the LocoRobo team hopes to bring a strong robotics program to classrooms across America. You can find out more and support the non-profit by buying a LocoRobo on their Indiegogo page.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *