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posted by mattie_p on Wednesday March 12 2014, @08:29AM   Printer-friendly
from the play-into-our-hands dept.

skullz writes:

"Much ado has been made about SXSW and the resurgence of hardware hacking as apposed to software. Even NPR is getting in on the action, airing a story about littleBits SXSW demo, including some videos. LittleBits are small circuit modules which snap together using magnets, much like LEGOs would if they were held together by magnets. The company pays homage to an open source mentality and hosts example projects, such as this LEGO and littleBit soundmachine, on its website, even though it seems to be missing several (or all) of the actual assembly instructions."

From their website:

littleBits (spelled lower case L, upper case B, all one word) consists of tiny circuit-boards with specific functions engineered to snap together with magnets. No soldering, no wiring, no programming, just snap together for prototyping, learning and fun. Each bit has a specific function (light, sound, sensors, buttons, thresholds, pulse, motors, etc), and modules snap to make larger circuits. Just as LEGO (TM) allows you to create complex structures with very little engineering knowledge, littleBits are small, simple, intuitive, blocks that make creating with sophisticated electronics a matter of snapping small magnets together.

If you followed SXSW, please share your favorite discoveries or insights gleaned from the conference.

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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by terryk30 on Wednesday March 12 2014, @03:43PM

    by terryk30 (1753) on Wednesday March 12 2014, @03:43PM (#15327)

    For beginners young or older, aren't those "100 in 1" kits with the spring contacts still a great choice for basic electronics? Example. []

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  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 13 2014, @05:50AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 13 2014, @05:50AM (#15719)

    No. I hated those spring terminals. They should be wiped from the face of the earth. If I'd had breadboards instead of spring terminals as a child, I might have been interested in hardware first, rather than software. The frustration in wiring things with spring terminals cannot be overstated: wires popping out, loose contacts, spaghetti-wiring... Only now, as an adult, am I revisiting electronics because a friend gave me a breadboard and a handful of components to get me started.