(Image courtesy of LocoRobo)
What sets Loopy — a three-inch-tall robot hailing from “Planet Loopitron” — apart from other similar robotics tools for kids is that it comes equipped with artificial intelligence capabilities. The company, founded by Drexel University Ph.D. Pramod Abichandani, says Loopy’s AI and on-board sensors allow the toy to “learn and grow over time, personalize his responses to his human companion, and react to the world around him.”
The $20,000 campaign will help the company expand Loopy’s world with additional accessories, features and product improvements, as well as help manufacturing efforts.
“We wanted to offer the Kickstarter community, the earliest adopters of new and forward-thinking technologies, a chance to back Loopy and provide feedback within the community that we can incorporate into the final product design,” Abichandani said in an email.
In 2014, Abichandani raised over $40,000 through another crowdfunding campaign, which gave LocoRobo the boost to become a standalone company focusing on the impact robotics can have in STEM education.
“Social robotics for children has been a research area of interest for me since my days at Drexel,” the researcher said. “Loopy will have a positive impact on STEM education, laying the foundation to make it more fun for children at the earliest levels of education (kindergarten to second grade) to learn computational thinking as a pre-cursor to computer science.”
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