Topobo: Toy for Dads

Topobo GriffinIt’s things like Topobo that make me glad that I am the father of a young boy.

Imagine a Lego set with some dynamic pieces that can play back the inputs that you give them. Create a dog-shaped thing with legs, twist the hip-joints back and forth, then set it down. The dynamic joints will play back the motion and the dog-thing may even get some forward motion. The whole concept is perhaps better explained by the inventors:

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Topobo is a 3D constructive assembly system embedded with kinetic memory, the ability to record and playback physical motion. Unique among modeling systems is Topobo?s coincident physical input and output behaviors. By snapping together a combination of Passive (static) and Active (motorized) components, people can quickly assemble dynamic biomorphic forms like animals and skeletons with Topobo, animate those forms by pushing, pulling, and twisting them, and observe the system repeatedly play back those motions.

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