The Hack-E-Bot was created to make robotics kits accessible to people of all ages and skill levels. The goal is to offer a very easy to assemble and use robot that children can actually take home with them. This project started When Richard Albritton was asked to organize a small robotics fair as part of the Norwescon Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention. One thing Richard thought that children who attended the robotics fair should not only see some amazing robots, but get to bring one home with them as well. While looking around for inexpensive and easy to use entry-level kits, a few things became clear;

  1. Entry level robotics kits are expensive.
    • On average, most basic programmable robots are $150 or more.
  2. Kitsofteneitherrequire many tools and high dexterity to assemble or come as a pre-assembled toy.
    • Most beginners are intimidated by extremely complex or involved assembly of a robotics kit.
    • Smaller children simply don’t have the coordination, or patents to install countless small screws and bolts.
    • A pre-assembled kit limits the amount if familiarity of electronics hardware components.
  3. Most robots use a set form factor and integrated chips.
    • Often, to upgrade, a person would have to abandon an existing kit and buy a new and even more expensive one.
    • While integrated chips to make sense for advanced robotics, cost and electronic waste could be reduced for entry-level robotics by allowing the chip itself to be upgraded.

This project hopes to offer a solution to some of these issues by providing a simple kit that will ensure success for even the least tech savvy of people. Also providing an upgradeable platform that can carry a beginner with confidence into the field of robotics and programming before having to make a larger investment in hardware.

Groups that we are working with