QuadBot is the 3D-printed, customizable crab robot that will teach you to code

We’re not telling you anything new by saying that coding, robotics, and 3D printing are, to quote Anchorman’s Ron Burgundy, “kind of a big deal.”

But for most of us, knowing that information and actually turning into something useful are two very different things. That’s why a new Kickstarter campaign called QuadBot is so cool.

QuadBot is a 3D-printable, 100 percent programmable, Arduino-powered walking robot. It’s designed to transform you from zero to robotics hero through a crash course in everything it takes to bring your very own crazy-looking crab robot to life. Unlike many similar code-your-own-robot projects we’ve covered in the past, QuadBot isn’t limited to kids, and instead promises something for everyone from aspiring makers to more confident hackers.

“On a practical level, QuadBot can engage younger makers with robotics, while still being powerful enough to be hacked by veteran hobbyists,” co-creator Josh Elijah told Digital Trends. “In this way, it’s a robot that spans age groups and knowledge abilities, and you don’t really see that often. Most robots are either supersimple and cheap, or supercomplex and prohibitive.”

QuadBot may not look like it, but it’s essentially an entire robotics and computer science course compressed into a crab robot form factor. It distills all the lessons Elijah and co-founder Jack Scott-Reeve learned from running a series of engineering workshops in the U.K. for four years.

“We taught our own series of workshops, and realized how lacking robotics education was,” Elijah said. “There just wasn’t a product that was powerful enough, at a low enough cost to be accessible, so over eight months we refined a design that was to become QuadBot.”

With kits for both those who want to 3D print their own pieces and those who don’t, there are QuadBot sets available for any preference. Prices start at $155 for a maker kit and go up to $275 for a full version with Bluetooth module. Shipping is set to take place in April 2017.

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