LEGO has released an official app for Android smartphones that allows users to remotely control their Mindstorm NXT robots by moving the handset. LEGO MINDroid is a free download for Android 2.1 phones or above, and creates a Bluetooth link between the handset and the NXT controller block.
If you thought that Lego shirt folding robot I mentioned earlier was complex, these ships will really twist your noodle. Some Lego building masters have constructed massive navy ships using Lego bricks and ingenuity. The largest of the three ships is a model of the USS Intrepid and the thing is so huge it couldn't be constructed inside the builder's home.
I like Lego and played with them a lot as a kid. I typically built things like guns or cars that I would then proceed to break apart in various different types of accidents. I never built things that actually served a purpose in the real world. That is unless a Lego stick to whack my brother with counts as something serving a real world use.
We have to admit, we weren't particularly convinced by the Pentax Optio RS1000 earlier on today, with its somewhat superfluous adhesive skins, but that's because the camera company didn't show us the really geeky options. Akihabara spotted some LEGO-style versions, which presumably have a base plate that sticks to the front of the RS1000 and then allows you to build up 3D models.
The digital realm is finding its place here in the real world all too often, if you ask us. From gadgets turning into tables, or using classic enemies as your next couch, it's happening enough that we're not even surprised to see the next iteration. We would be lying if we said this new addition didn't get us all excited to dig out our classic Nintendo and start playing some dirt bike action right now. This is a real Excitebike. As real as you get without an engine, and made from Legos, anyway.
Did anyone else notice it's Monday? We sure did. It just has an air about it, doesn't it? Well, we're happy that you chose to start your week out with us, and welcome to this latest edition of the Daily Slash. Tonight, in the Best of R3, we've got a CDMA HTC Hero showing up somewhere it doesn't belong, and Samsung wants to give you money for developing applications. And then in the Dredge 'Net, Blue Ant's got a new speakerphone for your Bluetooth pleasure, a new report shows cell phone shipments around the world are growing, and finally, a LEGO robot that can raise its own bridge.
If you read SlashGear you know we are, suckers for stuff made from Lego building blocks. One of my favorite Lego gadgets was the robot that could solve the Rubik's Cube using a Motorola Droid. I have also seen some geeks take Lego blocks and use them for keys on their keyboard, but that would be uncomfortable.
While some robots are made to teach you something, or even go easy on your pocket book, this little do it yourself LEGO robot is just about the coolest thing we've seen today. There's a lot going on here, especially with the inclusion of the Motorola Droid suspended over the Rubik's cube in question, but we have to admit. The fact that this application allows for the Android-powered handset to solve a cube we've never come close to solving in just 25 seconds is mighty impressive.
The Nokia N900 has already shown itself to be one of the more hack-friendly devices out there right now - we've seen it flirting with alternative OSes, unusual controllers and more - and the best part is that the Finnish company themselves are pushing for as much tampering as possible. Currently Nokia is running the PUSH N900 competition in the US, asking teams to come up with unusual ways to implement the Maemo smartphone, and one such project is Niko, a Twitter-controlled robot.
Take LEGO, add pseudo-Steampunk style and throw in glitchy electronic music and you might end up with something like Yoshi Akai's wonderful LEGO Sequencer MR II. A hand-crafted 8-step sequencer, the bizarre instrument uses LEGO bricks to build up patterns of different sounds.