About robots, robot development
and those who make it happen


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  • Edison Project

    Robotics project Edison was originally started in 2007 by Brenton O’Brien, Managing Director of Microbric, in an attempt to address the shortage of affordable technology resources in mainstream education.

    Eventhough the initial idea for Edison started as early as 2007, it was only toward the end of 2013 that some real progress was made using a grant from the South Australian government (IVP grant).

    Early Edison concept, 2007 



    The aim of project Edison is to create the easiest and most accessible way for robot enthusiasts and school teachers to get involved with robotics technology. For this reason Edison has to be developed with the following requirements in mind:

    • LEGO® compatible
    • easily programmable
    • packed with sensors
    • cool features
    • affordable price



    Since Edison is intended to be used in schools as a fun and engaging way to educate students, Edison was made LEGO® compatible. In that way students can be creative and personalize their robot.

    Robot Edison is LEGO Compatible 



    To make programming Edison easy, a graphical programming language was created called EdWare. EdWare is a visually and intuitive method using drag and drop icons to form programs.

    Because programming might initially be difficult, pre-programmed functions were created using barcodes. These barcodes can be read by Edison and activate functions, such as line following, obstacle avoidance and remote control from a TV/DVD remote control.

    EdWare Visual Programming 



    In order to keep the price down, the available components are being used as efficiently as possible by giving them multiple functions.

    Example: The infrared (IR) light receiver component is able to perform three different functions.

    1. Obstacle detection

    2. Receive commands from a standard TV/DVD remote control

    3. Receive data from another Edison robot

    Programming Edison With Barcodes

    Edison tackles the question of student engagement and experimental learning by providing an intuitive icon based drag and drop programming software, as well as a wide array of sensors to react to light, sound and remote commands.

    Edison has become an affordable, easy-to-program robot intended to be used in schools as a fun and engaging way to educate students about robotics and programming.

    It encompasses the functionality of other robotic products already available, but at a much lower price ($39), opening the door to wide spread adoption by all schools.

    To further develop Edison, a Kickstarter campaign was set up with a final goal of raising $20,000.


    UPDATE: August 27th

    The Edison Kickstarter project has reached the $100,000 stretch goal!

    At $100,000 they will produce a FREE iPad and Android version of EdWare, so Edison can be programmed from a tablet.


    "Whilst schools recognize the importance of STEM education to the future of today’s students, providing a holistic, practical experience is often dictated by circumstantial factors such as available budget. We believe that this shouldn’t be a factor that prevents students getting the most effective education possible and have launched our $39 Edison robot to level the playing field for every student in every school,"

    Brenton O’Brien, Managing Director of Microbric.

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