LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Introduces Mobile Programming With New EV3 Programmer App For Tablets

NEW YORK and WASHINGTON, Sept. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Today the LEGO Group announced the LEGO® MINDSTORMS® EV3 Programmer App, a new application that allows builders to create programs for MINDSTORMS robots directly from iOS and Android tablet devices. Featuring a streamlined selection of the most-used commands, the EV3 Programmer App allows for more interaction away from the desktop or laptop computer, giving users even more freedom to explore and tinker with the MINDSTORMS platform.  The EV3 Programmer App will be available in free versions for iOS and Android tablets in English, German, French, Dutch, Spanish, Danish, Japanese, Chinese (Mandarin), Korean and Russian in late November 2015. The app is not a standalone experience, but designed for LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3, the LEGO construction set that allows you to build and program robots that do what you want them to do (U.S. SRP $349).

The EV3 Programmer App consists of the 11 most popular programming blocks in the LEGO MINDSTORMS software, including action blocks, flow blocks and comment blocks. After writing and saving a program within the app, a user can progress to more advanced programming by opening it in the LEGO MINDSTORMS desktop software.  To provide additional inspiration for beginner robot makers, the app will feature building missions, videos and building instructions for five starter robots that represent a variety of building and programming experiences all while delivering the fun factor for which LEGO building is known.

„By extending MINDSTORMS robotic programming to tablets, we are embracing the ‚anywhere, anytime‘ of mobile devices to unleash even more creativity in building and programming with MINDSTORMS,“ said Filippa Malmegard, LEGO MINDSTORMS community manager. „When we untether the experience from the desktop, programming really becomes a playful extension of building, allowing users to add a new behavior or interactivity to their LEGO creations. This extra level of mobility will make the EV3 Programmer App an accessible and convenient programming starter experience for a new generation of users, while at the same time adding play value for our existing MINDSTORMS Community.“

From Play to Prototype: LEGO MINDSTORMS at World Maker Faire and Smithsonian Innovation Festival
To further inspire the next generation of innovators, the LEGO Group is showcasing the creativity and innovation of the MINDSTORMS Community at two high profile events this weekend, World Maker Faire, September 26-27, in New York, NY, and the Smithsonian Innovation Festival, September 26 – 27, in Washington, DC. At each event, MINDSTORMS makers will demonstrate inventions they’ve built using MINDSTORMS building sets as prototyping tools in addition to showcasing a variety of fun LEGO robots.

A number of recipients of LEGO Prototyping Kits from this summer’s Play to Prototyping Challenge, launched during the National Week of Making in June, will participate in World Maker Faire. LEGO MINDSTORMS Community Manager Filippa Malmegard will also moderate a panel on the topic „From Play to Prototype“ where featured builders will discuss how LEGO bricks and elements can serve as a creative prototyping platform for new concepts and inventions ranging from prosthetics to 3D printers. (Saturday, September 26, 3:45PM – 4:15 PM)

At the Smithsonian Innovation Festival in Washington, DC, Shubham Banerjee, the 14-year-old founder of Braigo Labs will demonstrate his braille printer built entirely from LEGO MINDSTORMS and share his process of invention with attendees.  Alongside Shubham, Cameron Kruse, Fulbright alumni and LEGO MINDSTORMS builder will demonstrate a prototype for his baseball mudder, a machine that can apply the same amount of mud to each new baseball, eliminating inconsistencies in the ways mud was applied to new baseballs before they were used in a game. Both Shubham and Cameron will participate in 15 minute Q&A interviews as part of the event as well.

The EV3 Programmer App for tablets will be available through the App Store and Google Play in late November 2015. For more information on LEGO MINDSTORMS and examples of robots built using LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3, please visit www.LEGO.com/MINDSTORMS.

DFRobot Announces Vortex – A First of its Kind, Intelligent and Responsive Robot Toy

New York—July 9, 2015—Robotics and open source hardware provider DFRobot today announces their new interactive toy, the Vortex robot. Designed to teach, empower and entertain children in an interactive robotics environment, DFRobot today also launched its Kickstarter campaign to raise $50,000 for continued product development. 

Combatting the trend of over-reliance on virtual games and screen time while transforming the robotic toy, DFRobot’s Vortex allows children to combine physical and virtual play. Children can interact with their toy robot while also programming and inventing their own commands and games, all via their smartphone or tablet.

Vortex has the following standout features:

  • Ready for Action—The Vortex robot and apps are fully functional right out of the box. Simply pair the robot with each child’s personal phone or tablet (compatible with both iOS and Android) via Bluetooth, and it’s ready to run. Children maneuver the Vortex by simply tapping their device’s screen to initiate commands
  • Infinite Programming Possibilities—Vortex presents infinite possibilities to create and play new games. It’s compatible with highly customizable open source hardware platform, Arduino, as well as with programming language Scratch. The Vortex robot can navigate obstacles, detect lines and report back by using infrared, grey scale and sound speakers. Easy to use, Vortex makes a child’s introduction to programming fully accessible and understandable and will be a great teaching resource for classrooms, making complex programming and coding easier for children to understand and practice
  • Customizable Games—Children have endless opportunities to create their own games and can also play the pre-programmed, free games including: Bumping Fight, Virtual Golf, Driving and Robot Soccer. Each game allows children to compete against their friends, parents or the robot AI. All games are designed to be both intuitive and customizable, as the child creates their own play experience

“We’re transforming the household into part robotics lab, part playground,” said Ricky Ye, CEO, DFRobot. “We fully believe in the philosophy of learning through play. With our robot, which offers an immersive programming experience, children can learn to code while having genuine fun. Our mission is to bridge the gap between toys and education–particularly STEM education–as technology-driven skills are more important than ever.”

Vortex’s pre-programmed games are designed to be fun and intuitive. Bumping Fight serves as a pushing match between two players to force others from the arena, while Virtual Golf allows children to direct the robot towards a target, while controlling the power of their shots. In addition, Driving allows children to use their device as a remote control to drive their Vortex forward, backwards, right or left around a track, and with Robot Soccer, children can play a match with anywhere from 2-22 players.

DFRobot’s Vortex is suggested for children ages six and up. By supporting the Kickstarter campaign, backers can pre-order the Vortex robot two-pack for $119 with their contributions. Robots will ship to consumers in fall, 2015.

About DFRobot

 DFRobot is a robotics and open source hardware provider that is dedicated to creating innovative, user-friendly products that foster a strong community of learning. DFRobot collaborates with multiple tech giants including Intel and Microsoft and has a product catalog boasting over 1,000 components and widgets including sensors, robotic platforms, communication modules and 3D printers. DFRobot is one of the early evangelists of the Maker Movement and strongly supports greater access to the maker culture.

DFRobot’s new product, Vortex is an intelligent and responsive robot that will enable children to learn, play and program. Vortex will bring together robotics with digital games through fun and interactive apps that allow children to explore, program their own games and solve problems.

DFRobot is headquartered in Shanghai, China. For more information visit www.dfrobot.com.

Meet Codie

Codie is a robotic toy and a custom-built graphic coding language. Codie is an educational tool which fits into the playing style of the children and augments their experience — blurring the line between learning and play. While playing with Codie, the children become familiar with logical thinking that all technology is based on while gaining invaluable problem solving skills along the way. Codie provides educates on algorithmic thinking without the constraints of traditional educational tools.

The Codie app makes it fun for children to learn algorithmic thinking. We organized complex robotic code into colorful blocks children can arrange and connect with arrows showing the direction of execution. While having fun, they learn the basics of coding, using real programming patterns, including: if-else structures, loops, varia-bles and subroutines.

The Codie robot is an affordable and fun toy that pairs with the intuitive app. This sturdy robot is stuffed with equipment and sensors that make it responsive and fun. Codie will provide entertainment for the whole family for many hours to come. Codie comes fully assembled, just take it out of the box, pair it with your smartphone via wireless Bluetooth connection and play. The body of the Codie robot is carved out of high-quality wood and every single unit is hand-crafted.

Technology needs to be part of every child’s education and schools have realized that they need to expose children to technology at an early age. Constraints in our educational system result in the inability to pay attention to every child’s own unique needs. At Codie, we want to inspire these young bright minds to be interested in learning about technology while having fun at the same time. Codie is not just a toy, but rather a creative tool. It’s a companion that augments other games. Playing with Codie is a high-quality learning experience, and it allows your child to understand coding in a fun and interactive way. Children get empowered by the knowledge they get with Codie and the whole process feels natural and seamless. Codie grows with your child. It provides more sophisticated programs as your child surpasses the basics. While playing with Cody your child will become familiar with the logic of computer coding — providing a foundation of understanding they will draw from for the rest of their lives.

more information here: http://www.getcodie.com/

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