Bega's young CoWS a tech-savvy herd

BEGA is known for raising great cows, but this is an exciting vision for the region’s future.

Aurin Yang, 12, demonstrates a simple 3D game creation software program called Kodu at a CoWS Near the Coast workshop on Friday night.

Aurin Yang, 12, demonstrates a simple 3D game creation software program called Kodu at a CoWS Near the Coast workshop on Friday night.

Young Bega Valley locals taking part in Friday night's programming workshop include (from left) Anna Auer, Aurin Yang, Ryan Neyle, Priya Benjamin, Lachy Anderson and Maddie Gordon.

Young Bega Valley locals taking part in Friday night's programming workshop include (from left) Anna Auer, Aurin Yang, Ryan Neyle, Priya Benjamin, Lachy Anderson and Maddie Gordon.

Around 12 young people, none older than high school age, took part in a workshop on Friday at Bega’s new co-working space, CoWS Near the Coast, learning the basics of computer programming and coding software.

One of the workshop presenters was 12-year-old Aurin Yang!

Aurin gave a demonstration of a game creation program called Kodu, with which he has made his own 3D worlds and characters.

“It’s a simple Scratch-based program – really easy and lots of fun,” Aurin said.

Aurin demonstrated the radial menus for adding characters and terrain, editing elements and creating actions for the characters to do.

One of his final products was a simple but creative 3D game where roaming “Kodus” flew about bumping into each other, one of which was destroying the others.

The only way to discover which was to direct your own character through the game area bumping into everyone else until the Kodu doing the damage was revealed.

This, remember, is 3D game programming by a 12-year-old!

CoWS coordinator Liam O’Duibhir said having so many young people interested in programming was “tremendous”.

“For the first one of these I expected five or six people to show up,” he said.

“We are giving them the basic tools and knowledge, stimulating their creativity and empowering them to create worlds.

“And if they have a passion for it, it can take them anywhere.

“If we can get kids into this stuff, the potential for this region is massive.”

* Visit CoWS Near the Coast on Facebook or follow it on Twitter @cows_bega.