toys

  • Andre Cassagnes, Creator Of The Etch A Sketch, Dead At 86

    Andre Cassagnes, Creator Of The Etch A Sketch, Dead At 86

    What Andre Cassagnes thought of today’s beeping and whirring playrooms we don’t know. We do know that the former electrician, born on September 23, 1926, created his iconic toy after noticing how graphite clung to a thin film of plastic while he was marking up a light switch decal. He tinkered with the idea for a while and created the L’Ecran Magique in 1959. Ohio Art… Read More

  • In Praise Of Dangerous Toys

    In Praise Of Dangerous Toys

    When I was growing up, my dad taught me that potassium nitrate, sulphur, and charcoal made gunpowder. He told me that you could add iron to the mix to get a red flame and that acids wouldn’t eat through your test tube. Then he sent me into the basement to make whatever I wanted while he read the paper. Read More

  • Kickstarter: This Rubber Band Shotgun Is The Mother Of All Rubber Band Shotguns

    Kickstarter: This Rubber Band Shotgun Is The Mother Of All Rubber Band Shotguns

    Imagine it’s Thanksgiving morning and you’re with the family. You creep down the stairs, Sheriff in hand, and sneak in on dear old dad as he makes bacon pancakes. You set your weapon on “shotgun” and pull the trigger. A volley of hot rubber whangs him in the legs, his old frame buckling as he takes the shot. Another kill. All this can be yours with the Bandit, an… Read More

  • Gift Guide: DIY Marble Machine Kit

    Keeping with my theme of DIY projects as gifts, I present to you this little treat, a laser-cut marble machine that comes to us via merry old England. While the mechanism is cool – you turn a little crank and send the balls climbing up a hill and then down a little ramp – the real fun comes in assembling the jolly little machine. Read More

  • The Tiggly Educational App Lets Babies Learn Shapes On Your Expensive Tablet

    The Tiggly Educational App Lets Babies Learn Shapes On Your Expensive Tablet

    Tiggly is a toy for kids who might be past the “teethe on your iPad” and just below the “I want to play the birds game” stages of mental development. Designed by a parent, Steve Miller of Cambridge, MA, the system includes three little shapes and a set of apps that allow kids to interact with shapes, colors, and animals on the screen. Read More

  • Ubooly, The Plush Toy With An iPhone Brain, Grabs $1.5M In Seed Funding

    Ubooly, The Plush Toy With An iPhone Brain, Grabs $1.5M In Seed Funding

    Ubooly, A toy that uses Apple’s iPhone or iPod touch as a means to turn a cuddly plush into an interactive experience, today revealed to TechCrunch that it has raised a $1.5 million seed funding round, from investors including Jeff Clavier’s SoftTech, 500 Startups, David Cohen and more. The funding follows Ubooly’s successful Kickstarter campaign that funded an initial… Read More

  • Y Kant Junior Fbricate Smiknduktrs: Tinkermite Tablet Teaches Kids The Basics Of Hardware Design

    Y Kant Junior Fbricate Smiknduktrs: Tinkermite Tablet Teaches Kids The Basics Of Hardware Design

    Modern parents will recognize the dilemma: we want our children to learn about hardware engineering and design at birth but we don’t want them using soldering irons until they can keep their heads upright and/or develop gross motor skills. What’s a parent to do? Enter Tinkermite, a Kickstarter project aimed at offering the wee ones the opportunity to understand the rudiments of… Read More

  • Leapfrog Announces Availability Of Leapster GS, A Mini Educational Tech Toy

    Leapfrog Announces Availability Of Leapster GS, A Mini Educational Tech Toy

    While I wouldn’t want to be the parent who buys their kids a Leapster GS instead of a Nintendo DS, I still think that this mini educational handheld is an interesting addition to Leapfrog’s line of kids toys. The GS looks a lot more like a handheld device than its predecessors and can take pictures and video with a built-in camera. The GS runs on four AA batteries and features a… Read More

  • Toys Grow Up: LittleBits Picks Up $3.65M, PCH Deal To Build Out Its Open-Source Hardware Vision

    Toys Grow Up: LittleBits Picks Up $3.65M, PCH Deal To Build Out Its Open-Source Hardware Vision

    LittleBits, an “open source hardware” startup that makes electronic building blocks to design objects for work and play, has today announced the addition of two significant building blocks of its own: it has picked up $3.65 million in funding; and has signed a manufacturing deal with PCH International to scale up its business. The Series A round of funding was led by True… Read More

  • Kickstarter: Turn Your iPad Into An Etch-A-Sketch

    Kickstarter: Turn Your iPad Into An Etch-A-Sketch

    Looking to relive your childhood or turn your iPad into a hackneyed political pun? You’d best get over to Ari Krupnik’s Kickstarter project. For $60 you get a red or blue case that simulates the actual Etch-A-Sketch knobs, allowing you to perform all of the deft maneuvers to which you’re accustomed. Stair steps? Easy. Long curve? Go for it. Horrible script writing? Read More