I am often by parents how they can get their kids interested in technology and programming in a fun and educational way. When I was a kid growing up I played with erector sets, built my own crystal radio, used my Edmund Scientific kit to create microscopes and telescopes. I used to show my Lego Mindstorms kit, my IMSAI 8080 computer that I build from a kit in 1974, my Arduino boards and now my RaspberryPi 2 device. There are many other computer programming education systems including Alice, Scratch, Squeak and Logo. For high school students you can set them in front of an integrated environment and let them use Delphi, C++, Java, Python, Javascript and Ruby to learn how to create applications. For younger kids, I think one of the best ways to learn about technology and programming is to use Arduino and RaspberryPi type boards connected to their PCs and Macs. The combination of the computer kids already use and these low cost and fun devices allows them to explore and integrate with world around them. There is a new visual programming environment for Arduino based fun called Visuino by Mitov Software.

Visuino is an Arduino IDE built using Embarcadero Delphi that allows you to build Arduino programs on your PC and compile the programs for Arduino and wide range of connected devices, sensors and circuits. On the Visuino page it states "A visual programming environment allowing you to program your Arduino boards. Although it currently supports the official Arduino boards, it is not restricted to their support alone and requests to support new hardware are welcome. If you are a hardware developer and don’t have much time to become an expert in software development then you can let Visuino become your personal software expert. If you’ve been exposed to the existing offering from Arduino you may be overwhelmed by the complexity of designing code to run your hardware components."

I have been working with some of the beta releases and having fun with LEDs, motors, gears and sensors. Sure, hardware, programmers, makers and tinkers can use Visuino to the max. Kids can also collaborate with their parents and other kids to learn real world technical and programming skills using Visuino.

You can download a trial at https://www.visuino.com/. Also, read the FAQ on the Visuino site. You can follow the discussions about Visuino on the Google+ group at https://plus.google.com/communities/116125623808250792822

Disclaimer: Mitov Software is an Embarcadero Technology Partner. While I was involved in the beta test of Visuino and it is built using Embarcadero Delphi, I have no direct involvement in Visuino development or marketing. I absolutely think Visuino is way cool, a great learning tool for kids and a testament to what you can build using Embarcadero development tools.

 

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