Gadgets for humans

Kano’s new $250 DIY kit lets kids build their own laptops

Kano Computer Kit Complete

Back in 2014, Kano launched a compelling DIY kit to let children build their own computers and learn to code while they were at it. Three years on, it’s got a new kit that kids aged six and up can craft into a laptop.

The $250 Computer Kit Complete features a Raspberry Pi 3 board, 10.1-inch HD display, rechargeable battery pack, three-port USB hub, speaker, wireless keyboard, and sound sensor. All the components fit into a case and stand, and Kano says the assembled laptop can fit into a child’s backpack.

It runs the open-source Kano OS, which is capable of running a Chromium-based browser, a coding environment and other apps; the kit also comes with a ‘storybook’ that guides kids through the process of building their own laptop, and the company says it’s included more than 150 hours of guided challenges to teach little tykes to code by making games, art, animations and music.

Kano OS also supports a bunch of apps like YouTube, a coding environment for MIT’s Scratch visual programming language, Wikipedia, and Codecademy for learning other programming languages for free.

That sounds like a sweet deal for people who dream of their kids building web apps in Python and using Linux terminal commands by the time they learn to tie their own shoelaces. It doesn’t hurt that the entire kit is cute as a button, with its colorful components and cables, a lovely DIY aesthetic to the overall design and that adorable orange keyboard.

Find the Computer Kit Complete over on Kano’s site for $250 (£230); it’ll also be available through other retailers online and in stores in November.

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Published September 26, 2017 — 15:24 UTC