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A computer and coding kit for all ages, all over the world. Simple as Lego, powered by Pi. Make games, learn code, create the future.
A computer and coding kit for all ages, all over the world. Simple as Lego, powered by Pi. Make games, learn code, create the future.
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13,387 backers pledged $1,522,160 to help bring this project to life.

Introducing Kano OS... The bright-eyed beta

Posted by Kano (Creator)

Brain and soul...

You made Kano happen, so you know it's got a brilliant brain: the Raspberry Pi, the little Linux board that could. 

But what about the soul? It's fair to say the kit's is Kano OS. It's the simplest, fastest, most fun software yet for DIY computing. And today, we're thrilled to release our first-ever beta.

In four months, we'll start shipping out your kits – but you can get Kano OS on a Pi today, with ridiculously easy setup. Download it, grab an SD card, start exploring, and tell the world!

The perfect Pi powerup

  • Kano OS is fast. We've boosted Raspberry Pi boot time by 50%, graphics rendering by 25%, and created beautiful, streamlined setup. (Stats!)
  • It's fun. Our beta has six sweet Kano Levels, all powered by simple steps and storytelling.
  • It's friendly, for all ages. For many beginners, their first boot into Linux is their last. We've built a humanized, game-inspired interface to keep you immersed in coding and playing.

Language arts

Software needs stories. So today, in double-whammy-ville, we're giving you new Kano books in five more languages: 官话, Deutsch, Español, العربية, Français... They're totally free for anyone to download. Let them know!

Extra credit

Some other cool features and fixes we're building into Kano:

  • Onboard Scratch, Codecademy, Khan Academy, and upgraded browsing
  • A simple app to create a Raspberry Pi SD card in a couple clicks
  • Want to make sure your SD card works? Use our checker!

Oh yeah, and how about using an iPad or tablet as a Pi screen? With Kano OS, it's simple, and super cool:

The shape of things to come

Kano OS is an open-source project – a version of Debian Linux that builds upon the work of scores of superb engineers in the community. Check these heroes out and follow their work. 

Our beta is out, but not open yet – it needs some eyeballs before we upstream, and that's where you come in. Make, play, and run it through its paces. In April, we'll start open-sourcing, so this is a month for dotting Is and crossing Ts. (Pro-tip: Kano OS works best on a Raspberry Pi Model B.)

And it goes without saying that all backers will get the ship version of Kano OS, plus our books, in July – and all updates will be, oh yes, free. If you want to get new releases first, join our email list!

Can you see your house from here?

The Kano Kit is just one part of a global movement to bring creative computing back, for young and old. We've built on the work of many, with a singular goal... A computer that anyone can make, simple, fun, and for everyone. Kano OS is another key part, full of soul and splendor.  

But the most important part is you. Your raves and heckles keep us going, focused, and inspired. What sounds weird? What sounds cool? As always, send us your questions, suggestions, and creations in the forum, Twitter, Facebook, or the comments below.

More soon from us, and we can't wait to hear from you.

Team Kano

Marc Thüss, Junior Eluhu, and 43 more people like this update.


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    1. AC Missias on

      The thought that crossed my mind is that using an iPad as a screen would be really counterintuitive for a kid -- I mean, it worked *before* I connected my little comuter gizmo! Now it just does... less! all the apps are gone!

      Can you suggest a way to explain this craziness? or am I pretty much stuck finding a cheap monitor to go with my kit?