Apple co-founder will use Irish tech to virtualise robotics education

5 May 2021

Robotify founders Adam Dalton and Evan Darcy. Image: Robotify

Irish edtech start-up Robotify is partnering with Woz Ed to deliver virtual robotics education to students around the world.

Virtual robotics education start-up Robotify has partnered with Steve Wozniak’s STEM curriculum provider, Woz Ed.

Woz Ed, founded by Apple co-founder Wozniak, delivers education programmes through which school-going students can pick up job-ready skills for the tech sector. The organisation works with students aged from five to 18 around the world. However, during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, hands-on access to robotics hardware for students has been severely restricted.

Robotics hardware can be costly, making it difficult to provide a sufficient level of training remotely. Enter Irish edtech company Robotify, which has created virtual learning environments for robotics education.

Robotify will provide proprietary software to Woz Ed to enable a virtual robotics experience for students engaging with the programme. The move will broaden access to coding and robotics education for students around the world.

‘Both Woz Ed and Robotify focus on ensuring young learners are job-ready for the most in-demand tech sector openings’

Robotify’s coding courses enable students to control virtual robots, using them to explore simulated environments from Mars to the depths of the seas. The company has also created a multiplayer platform for students to compete in global virtual robotics competitions.

“I’m impressed with the way Robotify makes coding engaging and accessible. By virtualising the technology, more young people will have the opportunity to learn and explore,” said Wozniak.

“Both Woz Ed and Robotify focus on ensuring young learners are job-ready for the most in-demand tech sector openings. We provide learners with the opportunity to engage in authentic projects to help them understand what work they love and excel at.”

The partnership with Woz Ed will bring Robotify’s edtech to tens of thousands of young learners across more than 3,500 schools, coding clubs and school districts in the US and around the world.

The deal aligns with the Irish company’s mission to provide equitable and accessible coding and robotics education to millions of students. Its short-term goal on this journey is to become a leading choice for youth STEM education across the US by 2023.

Robotify aims to engage children with more than 100 hours of guided coding curriculum. It also supports educators in delivering lessons with a purpose-built teacher dashboard. Courses from Robotify have been developed to US Computer Science Teachers Association standards.

Outside of school-level education, the company has secured a contract with the European Space Agency to provide robotics simulations for businesses using real-time satellite imagery from the Sentinel 1 and 2 satellites.

Wozniak is set to speak at the company’s virtual expo on 23 September.

“I have always admired Steve Wozniak so to be able to work with his team and share the same vision of nurturing the makers of the future by making STEM education more accessible to all students across the globe is really exciting for me and all the team at Robotify,” said Adam Dalton, CEO and co-founder of the Irish start-up.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.