USA Today’s list of the top 10 tech toys from Toy Fair 2014
Here’s a list of the top ten tech toys from the 2014 Toy Fair, which was held in NYC in mid-February. Highlights include a shout out to our friends at littleBits, as well as MOSS, a company that makes robotics kits for kids ages 8 and up, via USA Today:
Where can you find a talking bear that responds to your questions, a golf-ball-sized robot that follows the lines you draw and a watch that not only tells time but takes videos? At the 111th American International Toy Fair in New York City, which ran from February 16-19, 2014.
After scouring the football fields full of toy booths, here are my picks for 10 exciting tech toys coming to shelves later this year.
littleBits (Ages 8-up, kits range from $99 to $199:
Kids become inventors with these magnetized snap-together electronic blocks (little bits). The blocks – each a tiny circuit — are color-coded so that kids know that blue blocks are power units, pink represents controls (such as dimmers, motion triggers or slides), while green blocks are outputs (such as sounds, LED lights, etc.). Using their own imagination, kids can create cars that run, whirling dervishes, mini boom boxes, robots and more
MOSS (Ages 8-up, kits range from $149.95 to $399.95)
Building robots becomes as simple as connecting square blocks that are color-coded to perform different functions. There is no writing of code or wiring, just snapping together the blocks with steel spheres to build things that spin, crawl and move. These sets make the complicated process of designing a robot a snap..
littleBits: Prototyping is easier than you think with littleBits! No soldering, no programming and no wiring needed. Just snap together these magnetic circuit boards and get ready for some creative fun with modular electronics. Each piece has a different function from light and sound to motors and pulses. These kits come with instruction sheets and project ideas to get you started. Visit the littleBits community for more project ideas and don’t forget to post your “dream bit” to their site!
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Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.