Back in 2013, a company called Kano set out to teach kids and adults alike how to code with a simple computer and coding kit that appeared on Kickstarter. It received over $1.5 million in funding and has been shipping every since. Today, however, Kano is kicking things up a notch with the Computer Touch Kit, essentially the same computer and coding kit but now with a touchscreen.
"Designed to help beginners of all ages to understand how a computer works, what’s going on behind the touchscreens that we use everyday, and how to create art, music, and games with code—the Computer Kit Touch is a DIY computer that we want you to touch," Kano explains.
At its core, the Computer Touch Kit is basically a mini touch-enabled PC built around the Raspberry Pi 3, which itself boasts a 64-bit 12GHz quad-core Cortex A53 and 1GB of RAM. The Computer Touch Kit also comes with a 16GB microSD card, a keyboard that connects via a USB wireless dongle, and a battery (it's a mobile system, unlike the regular kit).
It's the 10-inch HD touchscreen ups the ante, making the Computer Touch Kit seem more like a complete PC. Considering that kids these days are surrounded by touch devices, it's a savvy move on Kano's part, one that could generate more interest in its kit.
"Your first experience with computing and code should be simple, playful, and powerful," said Alex Klein, co-founder and CEO of Kano. "The Computer Kit Touch takes the experience of building your own computer to a new level, by revealing the secrets of touch interaction. Combining block based and text based coding, it shows you how modern computing systems work. It gets you inside the screen, rather than just in front of it, and provides a set of art, music, and programming tools—not just toys."
The kit comes pre-loaded with the company's Kano OS. It also features over 100 challenges designed to teach users how to code through step-by-step instructions, while keeping it fun—the challenges have users creating games, art, music, and so forth.
For those who are interested, the Kano Computer Touch Kit is available now for $279.99.