Robotics has been the stuff of Sci-Fi movies, programmers, and big manufacturing companies. A Spanish startup called Minirobots wants to bring robotics within the reach of every common person and has developed small programmable robots called mOwayduino.

mOwayduino robot looks like a bigger computer mouse which can roam around your house freely. Three wheels are fitted at the bottom to facilitate its movement. mOwayduino robots have several sensors (anti-collision sensors, light sensor, and line sensor), multiple LED lights, microphone, and speaker on-board for performing various functions.  The basic hardware of mowayduino can be extended by adding additional accessories like camera and WiFi board through an expansion slot located at the top of the robot (see image below). A ‘Maker Kit’ even makes it possible to add personalized electronic circuits to mOwayduino to open up limitless possibilities. These mini robots can be used as mobile surveillance gadgets for your home, video game controllers or just as toys for your kids.

mOwayduino is a complete open source robot with an open API so that third party app developers and users can develop their own apps. These robots are Arduino-based and can be programmed via Ardunio IDE, Phyton, Java, Scratch, and C/C++ to customize their functionality according your needs. The company is also developing several apps for iOS and Android platforms so that you can control these robots with your smart phones and tablets (see video below). Mowayduino robots are powered by a Lithium Polymer battery which can be recharged via USB. The battery keeps the robot alive for 2 hours without any external power supply.

Minirobots has started a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo for funding their production. The total goal of the crowdfunding camapign is US$ 50,000. I got a mail from the company today that they are going to start the production of mOwayduino robots even if they don’t get reach the crowdfunding target. The basic  mOwayduino robot without any additional modules is available for preorder at US$ 99 and an everything included kit (camera, WiFi board, Maker Kit, etc.) is priced at US$ 290. The open market launch prices might be a bit higher as these prices are special for people who support the project initially.

Like many other crowdsourced projects which are creating waves, mOwayduino robots can shake up robotics and bring robots within the reach of everyone. Check the Website of the company for more information and the campaign page on Indiegogo for contributing to the project. Go ahead and contribute to the campaign if you are impressed with the project.