Nimblechapps Blog

This is the section where we get a chance to rant about latest happenings in the tech world. Keen to know our thoughts? Refer our blogs

Root – This New Robot Teaches you Coding in a Fun Way

Root Coding Robot

Root is a cool robot that teaches you code in a compelling way and makes your learning experience creative. This robot is designed by the Wyss Institute at Harvard University. Root uses the magnetism of a whiteboard to withstand gravity and drive on walls to make activities more fun.

What is Root?

Root is a robot that can draw, erase, and play music. It is the only robot in the world that can be used to teach coding from Kindergarten to College. This robot uses over 50 sensors and actuators that make coding relevant to any age groups and experience levels. Using Root, you can create and share your programs with people around the world. It is a robot that is designed to fit in every classroom. Learning opportunities with Root will last for years.

Physical Attributes

  1. Magnetic: It can drive vertically on any whiteboard that is metal-backed, or horizontally on any hard flat surface.
  2. Position: The gyroscope, accelerometer, and wheel encoders on Root help it to drive accurate distances and angles.
  3. Color Scanning: Root recognizes and responds to the colors it drives over using an array of 32 color sensors.
  4. Drawing & Erasing: It can lift and drop markers on paper and whiteboards and even erase on whiteboards too.
  5. Touch Surfaces: The robot can respond using the two front bumpers and four capacitive touch points.
  6. Ambient Light: It can detect and respond to the presence and direction of light sources in a place.
  7. Lights & Sounds: Root has 16 multicolor LEDs and it can play music to show its mood.
  8. Expandable: Add you own hardware, like a camera, to Root’s top surface and plug into the USB accessory port.

The Interface

  1. Program at Different Levels: In this robot, you can switch between three levels of competence- graphical programming, computational constructs, and text programming. The levels change as the mastery increases.
  2. Code Interactively: There is no need to save or compile the programs. The programs can be modified even while they are running. You can easily pause, step, or add instructions at any time.
  3. See what Root sees: You get constant access to what users the robot sees. It knows how to promote agent-based thinking and facilitates the debugging of robot programs.
  4. Action-based: The first level of Root Square provides a natural and intuitive way to let the robot take actions in response to events and prioritize those responses.
  5. Wireless Inputs: Wireless communication on Root Square allows the robot to respond as though a phone or tablet’s sensors were a part of itself.
  6. Sharing made easy: You can save and share your programs with other people to create a network with an unlimited number of new activities.

Levels of Proficiency

  1. Graphical Programming: Root Square has a graphical interface that can be understood by users of any age group. The color blocks build up its basic ‘if this, then that’ framework. It teaches things like events, sequences, loops, functions, timing, program stepping, and debugging.
  2. Computational Fluency: Root Square works with advanced flow control statements like when, repeat, if-then-else, in order to encourage computational fluency.
  3. Full-Text Programming: Root Square has a fully text-based interface that introduces you to professionally used languages including Python, JavaScript, and Swift. It teaches you the text-equivalent of code from the previous levels and lets you build powerful programs to achieve new goals.

Learning made easy with Root

Root can draw, erase, scan colors, play music, light up, sense touches, detect magnetic surfaces, respond to sensors in your phone or tablet and provides a unique coding experience. Root and Square combine ideas in a single system and allows you to learn the ins and outs of coding. You can book a Root for $199, the release date is yet to be announced.