toys

Anki’s Cozmo introduced as a consumer-level robot with personality

Anki’s Cozmo introduced as a consumer-level robot with personality

Artificial intelligence and robotics are two things that permeate modern-day life, whether it's the Curiosity rover scouring the surface of Mars or Watson dominating at a game of Jeopardy. For the most part, however, these robotic applications have been left to the professional spaces, be it the military, manufacturing, or science in general. But what about consumer applications? Overdrive developer Anki is asking that very question today with the introduction of its new, consumer-focused robot that goes by the name of Cozmo.

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Sphero SPRK+ robo-ball to get kids rolling with programming

Sphero SPRK+ robo-ball to get kids rolling with programming

Analysts, researchers, and even governments believe that IT jobs will still be en vogue by 2020, but the number of jobs will outnumber the roster of students capable of filling those openings. That's why a lot of companies and programs are trying to start kids young by introducing them to the world of computers and robotics, in the form of games, of course. One of those is Sphero, which is releasing its new and improved SPRK+ robot ball (ro-ball? ballbot?) and updated Lightning Lab app to get kids developing apps at a very early age.

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LEGO Technic Porsche 911 GT3 RS Review

LEGO Technic Porsche 911 GT3 RS Review

Over the past week we've been building the LEGO Porsche 911 GT3 RS, a masterpiece in top-level building-blocks construction. This set is 2,704 pieces large, and it's going to take you a few hours to construct, regardless of your skill level. This is the sort of set you put together in your spare moments - or something you spend an entire weekend on. Either way, you'll find this vehicle ending up filling up your desk at 6” (17cm) high, 22” (57cm) long and 9” (25cm) wide.

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Ford GT 1:3-scale Lego model unveiled for Le Mans

Ford GT 1:3-scale Lego model unveiled for Le Mans

To celebrate its return to Le Mans, as well as the racing debut of the incredible Ford GT super car, Ford commissioned a 1:3-scale model of its new flagship made completely out of Lego. The project was handled by master Lego modeler Pascal Lenhard, and took about three weeks of work. But the Lego expert not only recreated the modern Ford GT, he also build a model of the Ford GT40 Mk2 p/1046, which won Le Mans back in 1966.

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1960’s VW Beetle gets “LEGO Creator Expert” set

1960’s VW Beetle gets “LEGO Creator Expert” set

Today the folks at LEGO have revealed their next ultra-detailed vehicle set: the "1960's Volkswagen Beetle." That's complete with a surfer theme and a fabulous azure-blue paint job. Color scheme, that is to say. Please don't paint your LEGO bricks. This set also has an "authentic" 4-cylinder air-cooled engine and fuel tank and a fully accessible interior with beige seats that tilt forward. Four different license plates, too.

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Anki OVERDRIVE adds hulking big rig Supertrucks to its roster

Anki OVERDRIVE adds hulking big rig Supertrucks to its roster

Toys-to-life isn't dead, at least not yet. That is somewhat the hidden message that Anki is sending the market as it launches two new additions to its AI-controlled fleet of toy cars. These Supertrucks, the flaming red X52 and the cool green Freewheel, are meant to mimic the menacing forms of their real world big rig counterparts. However, they are able to accomplish what real, giant trucks should never be allowed to do: race on the road at neck breaking speeds and cause other vehicles around it to veer off the road to their demise.

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Nintendo Power Glove gutted, repurposed as a drone controller

Nintendo Power Glove gutted, repurposed as a drone controller

Despite almost being atrocious in its actual implementation, Nintendo's Power Glove accessory back in the NES days sparked many a hackers and tinkerer's imagination because of the possibilities it opened. Back then, however, such ideas were not easily possible to pull off. Fast forward to today's accessible and advanced electronics, the Power Glove has been put under the knife and the soldering iron in the name of science and boredom. Like this Hackaday project that shows a drone who's boss by controlling it with nothing but Jedi hand gestures.

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Burger King giveaway toy becomes Game Boy Color Nano via RPi Zero

Burger King giveaway toy becomes Game Boy Color Nano via RPi Zero

McDonald's may have seemed quite pioneering by launching Happy Meal boxes that transform into a Google Cardboard compatible VR headset. However, rival Burger King might have been ahead of the competition in mixing tech with food. Back in 2000, it gave away tiny gaming handhelds that looked like miniaturized versions of the Nintendo GameBoy Color. Of course, it was nothing like Nintendo's world-famous device, only capable of playing analog games inside. With today's technology, however, it was really only a matter of time before such a toy got a nearly accurate GameBoy makeover it deserved.

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Osmo Coding combines toys, programming, and learning

Osmo Coding combines toys, programming, and learning

While major players like Disney and Activision, to some extent, are abandoning the "toys-to-life" ship that they helped establish, their departure leaves room for more takers and innovators to take the market in new directions. Activision, for example, wants to try its luck in the card collecting and battling genre. Osmo, on the other hand, is doing what it does best, make educational toys. Osmo Coding attempt to bridge the divide between physical and digital while, at the same time, giving the young ones what could be their first taste of programming.

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LEGO reveals 2′ tall Big Ben Creator set

LEGO reveals 2′ tall Big Ben Creator set

When I was a kid, LEGO sets had a little bit of variety. I remember having your normal "City" sets, Space Police, and some kind of medieval line. While I enjoyed all of these, I usually chose to disassemble most of them and make my own creations. These days, it seems like everything under the sun has been made into a LEGO set. Today, we've got a look at a new Creator set, which will have you building a famous landmark with your tiny bricks.

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Disney Researchers found a way to make faster RFID toys

Disney Researchers found a way to make faster RFID toys

Disney might have officially called it quits in publishing its own digital games, but it isn't completely throwing in the towel in researching the best ways to make those. Either that or the researchers at Disney got the memo too late. Teaming up with researchers from Carnegie Mellon and MIT, Disney Researchers have come across a solution that would make RFID-based toys and games faster but also more efficient, by doing away with the need to even include batteries just to keep track of objects.

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Star Wars The Force Awakens prequel scenes on the way (via LEGO)

Star Wars The Force Awakens prequel scenes on the way (via LEGO)

This morning the folks behind LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens have revealed that their game will have extra plot. Extra, that is, in that it'll have scenes that will lead up to the events that take place in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. This will include Rathtar Hunting and Lor San Tekka's first appearance on Jakku - exactly what you've wanted to see, if the amount of people that've visited our "Who is Lor San Tekka" article is any indication.

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