We’re building robots at Internet Days

They are everywhere… in your refrigerator, in your pocket or on the bus on the way to work. Robots Computers have revolutionized our world in every possible way. Though there is a downside. The computers don’t think like us or speak our language. But there is always hope. There are people among us who speak the language of computers, and they are called programmers.

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Today we have gathered at Internet Days, the year’s biggest Swedish internet event. During two days we will discuss hundreds of internet related subjects and hopefully make our beloved internet a little better. And just as in earlier years, we have seven very interesting keynote speakers. As a gift to our speakers this year, we have chosen to focus attention on our initiatives in the area of children’s programming, Kid Hack.

Our goal is namely that “our future”, our children, should be able to understand and speak the language of computers. Therefore, we are trying to teach as many children as possible about programming. The robots I built this year are a luxury version of the paper robots that we let the children build.


The robots are constructed of printed circuit boards, which are available in all our computers and that our wonderful sponsor Cogra helped us with this year. The computer that controls it is an Arduino, a cheap and simple computer that is fundamentally based on a processor made just for refrigerators and washing machines, which are everywhere around us.

The program I have written is written in the language of the computer, and it allows the robot to have a variety of fun features. It is curious and looks around. Sometimes it thinks it sees something and then becomes surprised. And now and then it gets tired and falls asleep.


So those of you who have kids, drag them to our Kid Hack website and learn to program together with your children. The rest of you can go out and find someone to have children with. People at Internet Days, however, are in luck though because you get to build a little robot in the IIS booth without even having children.

PS: My robot has, in true internet spirit, inherited quite a lot from Erik Thorstensson’s cardboard robot that I met at an event a few years ago. Thanks Erik, you are a true inspiration for us all.


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About the blogger

Rickard Dahlstrand Rickard Dahlstrand Project Manager for Bredbandskollen Rickard is in charge of the Broadband Check, which is used to test the speed of various broadband connections. He has previously developed similar measurement systems for testing TCP/IP networks for various companies and worked as a networking technology instructor.