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Virtual cat is new school pet

Thursday October 6th 2016

Schoolchildren in Cambridge have a new pet - a digital cat.

Cinder, a virtual feline, pops up on pupils' laptops at Trumpington Community College.

Pupils took part in workshops with London-based design company Umbrellium to help create Cinder.

The feline can appear on pupils' laptops and also on a large mirror screen set up in the hall, where pupils can see her interacting with them.

When Cinder is hungry she pops up on screens asking for food.

Her favourite treat is sunshine, generated by the school's solar panels.

Usman Haque, from Umbrellium told the BBC: "Pupils have a budget of food that's generated through the solar energy, and they get to allocate that to the cat," he said.

"If it gets satiated it might go off and dream somewhere in the network."

Teachers say the project will encourage pupils to connect with their environment and work as a team.

Copyright Press Association 2016