Living Legos: Build Your Own Robot with TinkerBots Blocks

High-tech and low-tech come together with this set of not-so-basic building blocks connected to a central ‘Power Brain’ cube that turns your creation into a working robot. TinkerBots is a building kit that comes with all sorts of mobile and immobile components that snap together around the central cube so you can create an endless array of custom toys that walk, crawl, roll or or perform other movements.


The red ‘Power Brain’ cube provides energy and contains an Arduino-compatible microcontroller, Bluetooth connectivity, a USB charger, an LED button interface, a speaker and more. Kinetic components include twisters, pivots, motor-modules and grabbers, while static components are simple building blocks in various shapes. The kit is also compatible with Legos.

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Put them together any way you like – there’s no need to wire or program your creation, so even a five-year-old can get creative with it. Once you put it together, you ‘teach’ the robot what you want it to do. Hit the record button and move the robot the way you want it to move. Then, when you press play, it’ll repeat the action.

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Update: TinkerBots raised nearly 3 times its $100,000 on IndieGoGo, aiming to distribute the kit and add even more parts like renewable energy-producing modules, wind engines, and generators with crank handles. The more money peopled donate to the fundraising campaign, the more advanced of a kit they receive to start on personalized robotic creations.