Kano’s latest DIY kit turns motion into code
DIY computer company Kano has released another brightly-coloured addition to its learn-to-code arsenal: a motion sensor kit. The standalone product comes with the Kano App to teach would-be coders how to translate movement into data which can be applied to games, apps and music.
The kit, which is available for $30/£30, includes a USB motion sensor which can connect to any Windows or Mac computer — or the original Kano Computer kit — and comes with an easy-to-follow storybook featuring beginner’s coding challenges. Learn to code a hand-controlled version of the classic game Pong, for example, or make noise and mix tunes by “scratching” a DJ turntable.
The challenges are, of course, pretty basic; Kano’s entire ethos revolves around making coding as accessible and straightforward as possible. But the principal is exciting. Motion sensors are invisibly embedded in cars, phones and machinery, and for many how they actually work remains a bit of a mystery. The Motion Sensor kit makes the concept tangible.
Plus, it can be plugged into other Kano kits and made to do cool new things beyond the basic introductory tutorials. Hook it up to the Pixel light board, for instance, and you could code it to light up whenever someone walks into a room, or plug it into the Kano Camera and program it to take a photo whenever it detects movement. As Kano is keen to demonstrate to curious new coders of all ages, there are no limitations.