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10 companies started by college students

By: Sidney Stevens on April 16, 2015, 1:12 p.m.
Mark Pavlyukovskyy and Shree Bose, creators of Piper

Photo: Shree Bose

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Gaming may be a favorite pastime for kids (and more than a few adults), but it's essentially passive entertainment. What if games did more than merely spoon feed digital content? What if they also taught gamers to build electronic gadgets? That's the inspiration behind Piper, launched last year by recent Princeton grad Mark Pavlyukovskyy (right) and Harvard undergrad Shree Bose. Kids start by assembling a wooden hacker toolbox and then enter a Minecraft adventure game. Players advance through the game by building real-life hardware that helps them navigate the challenges (based on feedback from the game itself). The goal is to empower budding engineers by demystifying electronics and encouraging creative tinkering.