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Review: Coji by WowWee

I love robots, and anything that can inspire the next generation of developers is something I am a fan of. To this end, WowWee has released their Coji robot, an emoji robot to “learn to code with a smile.”

The Coji itself is a cute little robot that displays emojis on it’s screen that doubles as its face. When not displaying emojis on its face, it shows two blue eyes. The emojis can be selected by pushing buttons on the side of its head and activated by pressing down on the head. If left idle, the eyes will start blinking and it will start making noises and moving.

Coji really comes to life when paired with the app on a smartphone or tablet. The app contains different games that teach the user how to program by selecting a succession of arrows and emojis then sending them to the robot to have it act them out by moving on wheels beneath the fake treads and displaying on the screen. The robot can also be programmed in a freeplay mode to do whatever the user wants and have it move about more freely.

What Coji really reminded me of was the programmable cars of my youth, where a child would press a succession of buttons on the top to enter a series of commands. The car would then follow the commands to whatever ends the car was programmed to do. It’s the most rudimentary of programming, but it teaches how linear programming works and how commands would be executed in succession.

Compared to many other robots, Coji is a toy that executes simple commands, but the perfect introduction to programming for younger children. It is an adorable robot that can teach the most rudimentary basics of computer programming and give them a head start on STEM as they grow up to more advanced programming and robots.

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