Programming in Metaverse is child's play

Programming in Metaverse is child’s play

Ruben Aparicio, CEO of Minicoders.Carlos Ribaso

“I have new powers for a mage’s apprentice!” Celebrates 7-year-old Biel, after overcoming the challenge of programming his virtual pet’s movements in the Magic School experience on Roblox. Without realizing it, like the more than 30,000 boys and girls ages 6-12 who have played since the start of Magic School at the end of last school year, Bill is learning the basics of computer programming.

“Consolidating knowledge of algorithms at a young age is very interesting to develop their creativity and logical thinking. Throughout their lives, whatever they do, whether they are engineers or veterinarians, they all interact with the software,” explains Robin Aparicio, CEO of Minicoders, the educational platform that has been involved in Founded in Nucleo’s Venture Builder a few years ago. Less than a year ago. This is new .startThe technology, which is headquartered in Pier 01 in Barcelona, ​​is planning to start a capital raising process in the coming months to launch itself in the Asian market, where “children’s use of the Metaverse is more advanced,” she reveals.

Gamification technology, as well as “tech-conscious professions”, facilitate the learning process, because “guided play – in this case through a virtual assistant that helps children overcome challenges – is ideal for teaching”. ,” he continues, based on the results of a recent Cambridge University study.

Developing educational initiatives in the Metaverse is a good way to reach children, in the opinion of the CEO of Minicoders, because “social play in the Metaverse brings a richness of digital interactions.” “Children are already benefiting from the metaverse massively,” he warns. “They shift the focus from single-player gameplay to a Metaverse model, with their symbolic interactions with each other in virtual worlds. Kids audiences are found on two platforms, Roblox and Minecraft, hence the educational game experience on them. It’s a comfort to do.”

Although they do not rule out creating a similar gaming experience in Minecraft, Minicoders in their first release chose Roblox. “Currently, Roblox reaches 300 million users per month and has significantly surpassed Minecraft, which has 140 users. However, relevant platforms are changing rapidly, so we are very interested in its development,” he said. It is logic. “We are looking for the opportunity to get another experience in Roblox as well as get started in Minecraft, since there are kids in Minecraft a lot,” he adds.

Both Roblox and Minecraft are betting on the educational sector. Minecraft Education Edition It has been operating for five years, while Roblox is taking the first step in this field with its initiative roblox educationAnd the “It’s very new and still a little green, but it helps the traditional school have a presence on Roblox. We’re following it closely and want to be there when it matures.”

Regarding the controversies surrounding the security of this platform, Aparicio explains that “very few incidents” in this environment have worrisome consequences, “but there are very few, as the platform is censored in real-time behavior and expressions.” Not suitable for children in general. In Roblox, you can access public or private servers where only the child is playing or users that that child is allowed to interact with,” he chose to create Magic School Says in defense of the platform with a child stamp.

In its basic version, Magic School is free on Roblox. “We have chosen an open game to reach the largest number of children, but we offer a subscription for less than 5 euros per month to access the parental control area and support audiovisual content. We give parents the opportunity to understand the environment in which their children are and imagine their progress,” says Aparicio.

“As kids progress through the programming blocks, they unlock many magical powers and in-game features that allow them to explore and have fun in the Metaverse. We have 70 active challenges and do this every week. It unlocks new features, introduces new mechanics, different co-op games, and new powers, And new characters… In the Metaverse, the game experience doesn’t stop like Mario Kart, because it all involves frequent contact with users. There are a few basics in the game, but the extent of what can be done is constantly expanding. Kids look forward to finding these changes”, It highlights the CEO of Minicoders, which is currently producing this material. You have a team of 15 professionals.

The School of Magic’s top ten challenges introduce basic concepts, such as how the program consists of a series of instructions. From challenges 11 to 20, episodes are made, which are repeated over and over to make the program easier and more organized. In Challenges 21 to 39, children learn to perform actions to avoid repeating blocks of instructions within the main program, facilitating later revisions. From Challenges 31 to 40, conditional work is done to identify different modes of execution with consideration of probabilities, which are completed during Challenges 41 to 50 by introducing the Boolean operators OR-o- and AND-and. In the next 10 challenges, from 51 to 60, threads of parallel execution form, which allow tasks to be completed at the same time. In previous Challenges, 61 through 70, the concept of an infinite loop was incorporated into indefinite iterations on a regular basis.

In addition to following their children’s progress on each of these programming fundamentals in real time, parents can “see what kind of play their children are performing, whether individually, collaboratively, or competitively.” Obviously, because through sport we encourage teamwork and parents can help promote that as well”, revealed Aparicio.

The Magic School’s enchanting apprentice wears a blue hat like Beal’s avatar, the color of the team that faces online challenges to gain new powers and pets while exploring this virtual world of magical castles, cities and forests. part of the competition. To encourage competition, School of Magic promoters have recruited influencers like Crow, Sritaluli, or RussoPlay.

“We have several teams in the league. Crowe has adopted yellow. Russobel, blue. He and his followers compete with the rest of the team on the sports field and challenge each other to win weekly prizes in the form of pets and powers,” explains Robin Aparicio.

For Crao, who posts videos about the game on YouTube, the collaboration on the project is “interesting” because he believes “there is a lot to be gained from all the time players spend playing on Roblox.” It is.” In this YouTuber’s opinion, “Minicoders manage to blend fun and learning really well. We are used to hearing over and over again that games are not good and only bad things happen to players. I never thought so. Anyway, the amount of time we spend playing, we can use it to learn as well.”

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