There have been a lot of developments over at Modkit since its introduction in MAKE Volume 25. The graphical drag-and-drop tool works in your browser now and allows you to program and control an Arduino and similar microcontrollers. You can still give the free tool a spin and test it out, but if you’re wanting to dig deeper and try some of the newer special features (eg. code view, drag n’ drop hardware), you’ll need to sign up for the Alpha Club.
For those new to experimenting and programming with Arduino, especially young makers, Modkit is an outstanding way to learn about microcontroller hardware and how it connects to motors, sensors, and other devices. Novices can also bypass text-based programming by using the intuitive drag-and-drop blocks to create simple programs. Once you’ve got the basics, you’ll find that Modkit also offers access to the behind-the-scenes code for more fine-tuning and greater programming options.
If you’re wanting to give Modkit a try but lack an Arduino and other components needed to begin, take a look at Maker Shed’s Getting Started with Arduino Kit V2. It comes with a copy of the Getting Started with Arduino book as well as one Arduino Uno microcontroller, a solderless breadboard, jumper wire kit, LEDs, resistors, photo resistors, and more.