Next: the TekPet

| Print |  Email
Friday, February 01, 2008


TekPet.jpg

The TekPet is, for lack of a more erudite description, ridiculously cute. And cute with nine “emotions”: Pat its back and it makes happy noises, scoots smoothly across the floor and its eyes glow green. Bonk it on the head several times and it gets mad: red eyes, angry noises, jerky movements. But it’s cute with a purpose. TekPets are simple, build-it-yourself robots designed to get middle- and high-school kids — particularly girls — interested in electrical engineering and computer science, says lead developer Ellen Porter, a 20-year-old Gilchrist native and Oregon State University student. But 12-year-olds soldering circuit boards? You bet. Last summer, Porter and a team of OSU students had 38 middle-schoolers build TekPets during a two-week tech camp called “Out of the Box.” In December, the Cascade School District outside of Salem agreed to use TekPets as part of its teaching curriculum. Next up: TekPets in toy stores. While it’s still unknown who would do the actual commercialization (OSU initiated the concept and owns it), Porter and her team think they can have a $40 version — comparable kits cost around $200 — ready for market early this year. Suddenly cute sounds synonymous with smart.  ABRAHAM HYATT




Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

More Articles

The best crisis is the one you avoid

Contributed Blogs
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
crisisthumbBY GARY CONKLING | GUEST BLOGGER

Avoiding a crisis is a great way to burnish your reputation, increase brand loyalty and become a market leader.


Read more...

5 questions for Flywheel CEO Rakesh Mathur

The Latest
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
FW splashBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Portland is awash in rideshare options. We ask the head of Flywheel what sets his app apart.


Read more...

Can small be large?

Linda Baker
Wednesday, April 01, 2015
040115-lindablogthumbBY LINDA BAKER

Leaders in Oregon's ag sector gathered this morning in Portland’s Coopers Hall winery/taproom to discuss the role of the region as an export gateway, impediments to exporting products and solutions to containerized shipping challenges.


Read more...

Photo Diary: Forest Grove Farmers Market

The Latest
Thursday, May 14, 2015
IMG 8469BY JASON E. KAPLAN | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

There are more than 160 farmers markets in Oregon, contributing an estimated $50 million in sales, according to the Oregon Farmers Markets Association. We checked in on the Forest Grove market, which for several years has brought local produce and food vendors to Main Street in the center of town.


Read more...

Letting Go

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

As baby boomers sell their businesses, too many forget the all-important succession plan.


Read more...

Emperor of the Sea

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY COURTNEY SHERWOOD | Photos by Jason E. Kaplan

Pacific Seafood, one of the world’s largest processors, is rebranding as a more transparent and consumer-friendly operation. A controversial CEO and monopoly accusations from coastal fishermen complicate the tale.


Read more...

Make the Case

May 2015
Monday, April 27, 2015

10 briefcases that mean business.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS