Baugarten is Farmville for MINT (STEM) skills. Automate your farm via discovering the power of algebra + geometry to shape the world of your game.
How many of us understood what math class had to do with life?
The dynamism of STEM abstractions were reduced to an extrinsically-motivated, top-down, jumping-through-hoops experience of getting a passing grade in a series of arbitrary abstract symbol manipulations.
What if part of learning algebra and geometry was experiencing the application of their power to the world of a game? What if solving an equation for the area of a triangle enabled you to calculate how many seeds and how much fertiliser you need to buy? What if applying the Pythagorean theorem enabled you to know how much timber you need for fences to protect your crops against wild boars?
The Ancient Greeks invented our mathematical abstractions in a playful way, exploring and applying them to the world around them, experiencing their increased power to shape their world. Baugarten brings that experience to a 2-D game world. Built using the game engine Unity, Baugarten enables you to experience the value and power of these abstractions through intrinsic motivation, natural curiosity and playfulness. Make math fun again.
This year, Y Combinator listed education technology as the most important area in its annual “Call for Startups". Covid-19 is effecting a further stimulus to re-think the possibilities of education via technology. Zoom meetings where teachers talk at pupils (i.e. replicating school online, i.e., school but worse) are a common solution. Baugarten meets a worldwide need to improve student learning of MINT (STEM) skills. As Y Combinator explains, even a 2% increase in the quality of educational outcomes would be an important effect when considered on a global scale. For Germany to enter Industry 4.0 it must move beyond Bildung 1.0.
Baugarten is at an extremely early stage of development. Founder Henry van Wagenberg has sold one startup, RateMyStudyAbroad (now part of GoAbroad.com) in the United States. He brings 7 years experience programming web applications.