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Introduction to Physical Computing

Lancaster University and Institute of Coding via FutureLearn


Get an introduction to the technology behind physical computing

The latest tech, code and innovations no longer exclusively reside inside computers and laptops. They are now inside microcontrollers, and your phone, watch, and kettle can all be examples of physical computing.

On this course, you’ll explore what physical computing is, how it’s changed over the years and what it’s growing into.

You’ll explore the anatomy of physical computing and debate the ethical considerations of physical computing applications.

You’ll also explore the creative uses of this technology and follow the careers of people working in the physical computing industry.

Featured in the UK government’s The Skills Toolkit collection.

This course is designed for anyone who’s interested in what physical computing is, where it exists, and what it’s used for.

You might also be interested in the other courses in the Essential Creative Technologies collection from UAL Creative Computing Institute, Lancaster University and the Institute of Coding.


  • An Introduction to Physical Computing
    • Welcome to the course
    • What is physical computing?
    • Anatomy of physical computing
    • The implication of physical computing
    • End of Week 1
  • The Future of Physical Computing
    • Welcome to Week 2
    • How can physical computers be used creatively?
    • Who is working with physical computing?
    • What does the future hold for physical computing?
    • End of the course

Taught by

Joe Finney


4.7 rating at FutureLearn based on 142 ratings

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