Introducing Mirobot, A DIY WiFi Robot For Children


We’re quite sure that fathers parents people reading Hackaday wonder how to introduce their children acquaintances to the wonderful world of electronics. The Mirobot (Kickstarter link) might just be a good way to do so. As you may see in the picture above the Mirobot is a small WiFirobotics kit that children can build themselves to learn about technology, engineering and programming.

The laser cut chassis is assembled by snapping it together. All the electronics are left exposed to the outside so children may try to figure out which component does what. The robot is configured over your home WiFi via a Scratch-like visual programming tool. Everything (PCB, Arduino code, user interface) is open source.

The platform is based around the Arduino compatible ATMega328, two stepper motors, a Wifi module that can behave as a client or access point and 5 AA batteries. The campaign stretch goals include a collision detection sensor, line following functionality and finally a sound add-on.

Thanks [nickjohnson] for the tip.

23 thoughts on “Introducing Mirobot, A DIY WiFi Robot For Children

  1. Ye.. but I admire projects like these.
    When I was 11 my dad tuaght me to build a 555 led flasher. :)
    I was so happy.

    and When i was 8 my dad showed me how to build a crystal (nearly extinct now) radio.
    I really miss my dad.. he was awesome.
    I wish i could afford hacking about in south africa like most other could…

          1. Parents? You heartless uncaring expletive. What about guardians, uncles, aunts, great-uncles, great-aunts, neighbours, strangers etc?

            What is this world coming to? Get off my lawn.

    1. As a father, i wonder how to introduce electronics to my children (both a son and a daughter). the logical fallacy is that this statement implies women are not interested. Don’t be obnoxious and say it does.

      1. Its a cognitive miser and it works. For every Lady Ada we have 10.000 male geeks.

        Its like Stephan said ‘drink some tasty cow milk’, and you all jump screaming ‘HEY women lactate too!oneone7’

    2. What about Uncles, Aunts, Brothers, Sisters, teachers, and or Nannies!
      Actually I bought my niece her first tablet and robotics kit. Really I have no problem with partents but getting worked up one way or another over a minor error is just too much. What is funny is the person that got bent was a father.
      I want to see anyone go on a mommy blog and complain about every reference to mothers that could be a reference to a father.

        1. Dude parents is fine as frankly is father. I think most of the readers are actually capable of figuring out if this is something they want to share with someone else or not and to overlook the first statement.
          In fact anything that encourages fathers to take an active part in their children’s lives is probably a good thing. A lot of father are stuck in the go to work and make money for the family mode. Let’s encourage fathers to be fathers.

    3. “People” is a little species-centric don’t you think? What about something more generic and PC, like “sentient creatures” ??

      Haha. In my opinion, just because you are wandering around the world trying to enforce your particular agenda does not mean anyone else gives a rat’s butt. Write up your own _________ (insert favorite diversity NAZI group) articles for people that care.

  2. Wording aside, I think this project deserves a lot of attention. I’ve been planning something similar for a long time, but this ticks all the boxes:

    – It’s open source, both hardware and software.
    – The whole thing is a kit. No giving kids something preassembled and telling them that they can play with the software, but no touching the hardware.
    – No software installation for an IDE, it just uses your web browser. Kids can take theirs home and try it themselves.
    – Likewise, no hardware dongle, it interfaces over wifi.
    – A natural path from visual programming to text-based programming. Currently it uses a custom language, but Ben says he’s considering moving to Blockly.

      1. A large part of the roadblock teaching children to program is syntax. They may understand the fundamentals, but have a lot of trouble with syntax. Starting with a visual programming language shortcuts that and lets them get a firm foundation before having to deal with syntax in a ‘real’ programming language.

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