Chicago game publisher launches a crowdfunding campaign for their STEM-inspired, color-matching, robot-building game

Chicago, IL – January 11, 2017.

Today, XYZ Game Labs launched a Kickstarter for RobotLab: The Card Game, a
STEM-inspired card game where players race to build robots.

RobotLab: The Card Game is a light, family-friendly card game where you
take on the role of a scientist racing to build your robot and claim the
coveted Devol Prize in Robotics!  Along the way you’ll need to do some
research, deal with some faulty parts, and do your best to avoid the other
scientists trying to stop you.

„We wanted a game where the goal was creation rather than destruction. It
needed to be accessible for all types of players AND it needed to be about
robots,” said RobotLab co-creator and XYZ Game Labs CEO Adam McCrimmon.
“We
designed RobotLab so people new to tabletop gaming would be able to easily
pick it up and learn, but we still wanted a game what was complex enough
to
hold the interest of experienced gamers. After months of testing, we think
we’ve struck the right balance for both newcomers and serious gamers.“

RobotLab: The Card Game is for 2 to 5 players, ages 6 and up. The 2-player
game plays in about 10 minutes, adding 5-8 minutes for each additional
player. It includes a deck of 80 cards (assorted robot parts and action
cards) and 5 robot body cards. RobotLab: The Card Game is launching on
Kickstarter on Wednesday, January 11th. Delivery is anticipated in
October,
2017, and it is expected to sell for $20 at retail (Kickstarter backers
receive the game for $15 + $5 shipping).  For more information, you can
visit robotlabcg.com.

As part of their Kickstarter campaign, XYZ Game Labs will be donating
copies of RobotLab: The Card Game to a number of non-profit organizations
including: Lurie Children’s Hospital, the Chicago Public Library and The
Night Ministry. Non-profit organizations interested in receiving games
should contact [email protected].

About XYZ Game Labs

XYZ Game Labs is a board game designer and publisher based in Chicago, IL.
The company was formed under the guiding principle that tabletop gaming is
one of the best ways of bringing people together and fostering meaningful,
long lasting friendships. RobotLab: The Card Game is the company’s first
foray into the board game market.

RobotLab: The Card Game is a trademark of XYZ Game Labs, Inc.

LINK to Kickstarter

Bobbie 1S Robot

DEN HAAG, Netherlands, Dec. 23, 2016 — Anyone searching for a cool personal robot might be interested in Dawody Robotics, Bobbie 1S robot. This cute humanoid robot is voice controlled and can be used as a home guard, personal assistant, educational robot and family member in one.

The robot can be described as a Smartbot. A telephone and robot in one, Bobbie is equipped with a touch screen monitor and a camera that enables it to monitor the house, make calls, surf the web, receive messages and much more.

Bobbie has a simple program, making it easy for young and old to develop new applications for it. The robot has its own, sometimes annoying character that makes him special. Sometimes Bobbie will give surprising answers while having a chat with him. While shooting a promotion video, the founder of Dawody Robotics asked Bobbie who the President is. Bobbie’s answer was that he is officially running for president himself, promising to make Dawody Robotics great again.

Dawody Robotics‘ aim is to introduce Bobbie’s little brother in 2017 in collaboration with a partner company that will truly change the way we look at robots. „Our aim is to have robots in every household in a time span of 5 years from now, just like people have mobile phones nowadays,“ said Safa Dawody, the founder of Dawody Robotics. The price for Bobbie 1S is from $300 USD for the Super Early Birds and will be shipped estimated in March 2017 to its new owners. Who knows, maybe Bobbie 1S will make it to the White House one day.

LINK to Kickstarter

Armbot 3D Printer

A Kickstarter campaign has been recently launched for Armbot 3D printer. Armbot is a robotic arm 3D printer and also a laser engraver , that aspires to be the new standard for filament-based 3D printing.

The team behind Armbot 3D printer took inspiration from the robotic arm used in car manufacturing. ARMBOT has an articulated arm layout similar to our human arms,  This feature allows the printer to expand the print area and Enhance speed without losing print quality. Armbot also comes equipped with remote control features for tablet and smartphone.

Starting at 399 the ARMBOT has demonstrated a really affordable low price .This includes a windows 10 box  and 500g of PLA

The campaign features examples of high quality 3D prints done by the Armbot. From the look of it, the end product sure has a decent look. And even comes with precision laser engraving and drawing

If all goes well, the Armbot 3D printer will begin delivery in Feb-Mar 2017. The company is planning on scaling up the production by making use of a 3D print farm.

 

Link to Kickstarter

“Robots love Ice Cream the Card Game” to debut on Kickstarter

Robots Love Ice Cream the Card Game, a semi-cooperative family friendly card game for ages 8+, launches on Kickstarter November 13th, from tabletop publishing studio 25th Century Games.

The card game is based on the hit video game Robots Love Ice Cream™ by mobile experience studio Dragon Army, also located in Atlanta, GA. The video game was released in 2014 and named one of the best games of the year on both iOS and Android. This tabletop version features all of the same characters and art style found in the video game plus new illustrations only available in the card game version.

“In the card game version, we capture all of the fun, fast-paced dynamics from the much beloved mobile game. The vibrant art, quirky characters, and semi-cooperative gameplay make it a must have addition to your family’s game collection,” said Chad Elkins, creator of Robots Love Ice Cream the Card Game. “It’s hard not to like both robots and ice cream, so layering that theme on an easy to learn set collection card game proved to be a big hit in play testing.”

One to four players travel in their ice cream trucks to five different planets across the galaxy. They must work together to collect matching sets of weaponized ice cream cards and use them to destroy waves of attacking robots. If all of the robots are defeated, Spinston’s plans are foiled, collectively saving that planet’s supply of ice cream treats.

The crowd-sourced Kickstarter campaign for Robots Love Ice Cream the Card Game will help raise funds for the manufacturing costs to produce the game. The campaign will begin on November 13th and conclude on December 14th.

To learn more about Robots Love Ice Cream the Card Game, visit the Kickstarter page.

About 25th Century Games

25th Century Games is an Atlanta startup dedicated to publishing entertaining tabletop games and puzzles that bring people together. The company recently published their first project, a 1000 piece puzzle featuring a historic map of Atlanta from 1892. Their focus is designing games and puzzles which are family friendly and are suited for a variety of age levels.

About Dragon Army

Dragon Army, based in Atlanta, GA, is a mobile experience agency built to deliver the best entertainment to mobile devices everywhere. Consisting of a blended group of marketers, game designers, developers and artists, the team applies their diverse skills to create rewarding mobile experiences for the world’s top brands. The company currently partners with The Coca-Cola Company, The Home Depot, Red Bull and InterContinental Hotels Group.

bionicTOYS Launches Flexible Building Bricks on Kickstarter

bionicTOYS Launches Flexible Building Bricks on Kickstarter An Award-Winning Design That Turns Child’s Play Into STEM Learning

BERLIN, November 29, 2016 — Inspired by nature’s own flexibility, bionicTOYS has launched its first collection exclusively on Kickstarter. These highly-elastic building bricks let children and adults explore the art and science of motion through play.

 

bionicTOYS was created by German product designer Marcel Pasternak as a way to introduce important STEM-based skills to children. Through creative building, they are able to replicate organic actions found in nature and learn about bionics, mechanics, potential energy and other important principles of physics. The patent-pending flex-brick design allows for inventive, multi-functional play that can also interact with existing building bricks, such as LEGO® Technic or TinkerBots®.

With its Kickstarter launch, bionicTOYS is reimagining construction-based play. “It’s quite handy because you can just bend it in all directions,” says 13-year-old Felix. Its colorful design and easy-to-construct sets allow school-age children, parents, teachers, LEGO® fans, and design enthusiasts to explore a great range of creative possibilities.

About bionicTOYS bionicTOYS was created by 29-year-old Marcel Pasternak as part of his master’s thesis in product design. It has quickly developed into an educational toy company that has won the Green Product Award (Kids category), the Marianne Brandt Award – Material Effects (Product category) and is one of the winners of DMY ́s New Talent Award.

Link to Kickstarter

A Robot Arm for the Rest of Us

Slant Concepts is creating a robot arm that anyone can use.

Robot arms have been doing redundant tasks in manufacturing for nearly 70 years. These hundred thousand dollar behemoths manage assembly lines and pack boxes. But they only exist on the assembly-line. Why aren’t they in the home cleaning counters, feeding the pet, and prepping breakfast.

The main reason for this situation is that they are difficult to use. Th industrial arms in factories require skilled engineers or tradesmen to get working. They are also incredibly expensive. But a company named, Slant Concepts, is changing that with the ShopArm.

The ShopArm is a 3D printed robot arm that makers can build and the rest of us can just use. The ShopArm is meant to be used to perform some of the repetitive tasks in our lives.

The ShopArm currently can be trained to do anything it is physically capable of, by using a common PC. The ShopArm software lets the user select waypoints for the arm to move to. Just click on a place on the virtual workspace where you want the arm to go and it will move there. Then you can record a series of these to have the arm put bread in a toaster and start it.

Another way that Slant has created to train the ShopArm is with a camera. All anyone has to do is hold a green colored tracking marker over a camera on the end of the arm. Then arm will then follow the marker around and record the movements

Eventually, users of the arm will be able to bring it into their home, show it what they want done and then just leave it. They might train it to start the toast every morning at 7:00 AM or feed the pet on a regular basis. But the real value of the arm is in performing one-off repetitive tasks. Train it to decorate a Christmas cookie then have it do that 100 more times.

Slant is running the Kickstarter in order to continue developing the project to full implementation by normal consumers.

About Slant Concepts: Slant Concepts is a product design company based in Boise, ID. Slant was founded in 2014 as a product consultancy and micro-manufacturer. After completing numerous projects for client over its first two years, in 2016 Slant focused entirely on robotics and dedicated itself to producing internally developed products for the home, school and business.

Two Bit Circus Launches Kickstarter Campaign for New Maker Kit That Combines ART and STEM to Inspire Creativity in Young Inventors

LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Two Bit Circus, an engineering entertainment company, today released a new survey report highlighting the gender gap in STEM (science, technology, engineering, math)-based activities for children, revealing art as the key entry point to STEM, especially for girls.

Two Bit Circus recently surveyed an audience of more than 500 parents to understand gender differentiators in how children play and learn in relation to STEM/STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, math) activities. The report uncovers key insights on children’s educational interests and preferences for extracurricular activities and also shows a lack of awareness for STEM/STEAM in general. In fact, 47 percent of parents are unfamiliar with STEM/STEAM toys such as chemistry sets, microscopes, Arduinos, etc. And surprisingly both boys and girls share similar levels of interest in science and math in school, but girls are far more likely to prefer arts and crafts inside and outside of school than boys. This points to why there has been such a strong push for STEAM in order to help close the gender gap in STEM.

Additional key findings from the STEM vs. STEAM: The Gender Gap report include:

  • Parents of both male and female children equally report that their child’s favorite STEAM subject in school is either math (26%) or science (30%)
  • 41% of parents with boys say their child shows the most interest in technology/computing activities outside of school compared to only 18% of parents with girls
  • 45% of parents with girls report their child shows the most interest in art outside of school compared to only 10% of parents with boys
  • 62% of parents say that their child never participates in STEM extracurricular activities outside of school

To drive momentum for the STEAM movement and blend creativity, curiosity and critical thinking to inspire the next generation of inventors, Two Bit Circus is launching a Kickstarter campaign to support the creation of Oomiyu, a paper craft and technology kit. By allowing beginner inventors to build a fun, customized and interactive paper craft robotic owl, kids get hands-on experience with basic mechanical principles, electronics and programming that combined creates a unique STEAM experience. This maker kit is designed to bring art alive through creative innovation, combining art with STEM for a well-rounded and engaging creativity platform.

“Not only does Oomiyu foster a sense of excitement for STEAM by building creative confidence and curiosity in children, it also helps develop critical thinking skills and makes technology more appealing for creative and analytical thinkers alike,” said Two Bit Circus CEO and Co-founder, Brent Bushnell. “By creating this holistic STEAM-based kit, we hope to bring out the makers we know are hidden in every child.”

Oomiyu, a customizable platform, allows children to build, design, customize and program a paper creature to move, respond and emote to various stimuli. A companion mobile app and open source software extend the possibilities even further. Simple connectors make it easy to add new features and the included Arduino 101 packs powerful features like Bluetooth low-energy (enables easy connection to other devices and the internet) and machine learning (enables other pattern matching behaviors).

Also included in the maker kit are off-the-shelf components like LEDs, motors and paper patterns. The new Oomiyu maker kit offers a unique balance of design elements combined with more technical aspects of personalized programming for a craft that lives beautifully with technology.

This crowd-sourced funding campaign hopes to reach its goal of $72,921 USD* within the next 30 days, or about 500 units sold. The cost of Oomiyu is $150.

For more information about Oomiyu visit the Kickstarter campaign page.

About Two Bit Circus

Two Bit Circus is a location-based entertainment company creating the future of fun. The team of artists, inventors, educators and performers builds social games and experiences that aim to inspire, engage and reinvent the way people play. For more information, visit www.twobitcircus.com or follow @TwoBitCircus.

MODI, Smart IoT/Robotic Modules, Kickstarted

“JUST CONNECT.” LUXROBO wants you to simply connect its MODI modules to create an IoT or robotic device in seconds. MODI is a set of cube-shaped modules that LUXROBO launched on Kickstarter.com on October 14th.  It has already reached its funding goal of $30,000 in less than three days. With MODI, you can quickly and easily create devices like a theft detector, an RC car, a mini Segway and much more.

MODI comes with 13 different modules. They are color-coded into three different types: Input, Output and Setup. LUXROBO plans to add numerous other modules to its line-up soon. To take a full advantage of your MODI modules, you would customize the interactions among the modules through MODI Studio, LUXROBO’s simple graphic coding tool. You just need to drag and drop the commands. You can also convert the graphic coding into C Language (with other languages to be added) instantly.

The first thing you notice about MODI is its simple, elegant, minimalist design. You may also be surprised to see how small the modules are, only about 2.5 cm wide and long, and 1.5 cm tall. In such a compact dimension, LUXROBO has packed in PCB, MCU and its unique magnetic connection mechanism, in addition to the apparatus that supports each module’s unique function. Taking advantage of each module’s MCU, each MODI comes with MODI OS embedded. This feature enables each module to do its own processing and store memory. Each MODI is a smart module. One of the many benefits is MODI modules do not need to be connected to a PC or some other form of a master system to function on their own.

Putting MODI modules together is a pure joy. Each module’s four sides are all equipped for MODI’s unique magnetic connection. When placed close to another module, a pair of magnetic prongs come out slightly to form a tight and secure magnetic connection with the other. It is a lot of fun to try the automatic magnet connection over and over. Another advantage of MODI is its compatibility with Lego blocks. You can easily recycle the Legos or Lego-compatible blocks that you may have stored away to build a nice housing to your MODI devices.

LUXROBO aims to make IoT and robotic technologies more accessible for everyone, and that goal is captured in their vision of “Robotics of Things.” With its Kickstarter campaign, LUXROBO has taken a big step towards its vision of Robotics of Things. Until November 22nd, you can back LUXROBO and get MODI modules at approximately 40% off the estimated prices.

About LUXROBO:

LUXROBO’s roots are in robots. The founding team and core R&D members studied robotics together in college and have entered and won numerous international robot competitions together. LUXROBO was founded with the vision “Robotics of Things,” making robotic and IoT devices readily accessible for everyone.

LUXROBO is young and fearless. It was founded while its core members were still in college. It had no fear in developing its own OS for MODI and its own SW coding tool in MODI Studio. Even with MODI still in development and with no revenue stream to show, LUXROBO has been honored and recognized as one of Korea’s top technology-based startups, including being awarded Top11 at this year’s Echelon Asia Summit.

LUXROBO is ready for next big steps and challenges. LUXROBO has supplemented its young talents with experienced engineers and marketers from Samsung Electronics. With the Kickstarter campaign under way and supply of MODI modules to the UK soon to follow, LUXROBO is ready for a take-off.

Kickstarter Campaign:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/luxrobo/modi-create-anything-you-want-with-robotics-of-thi

Harvard University Based Startup Launches New Robot, Root, That Teaches Anyone To Code

All ages and skill levels can learn coding in an intuitive, interactive way.

 CAMBRIDGE, Mass. October 26, 2016 – Scansorial, a startup emerging from Harvard University, is on a mission to bridge the coding gap with the launch of their newest invention, Root: a fun, easy-to-use robot which teaches coding to anyone ages four to 99. Root has over 50 sensors and actuators with which it can draw, erase, play music, explore its world, and even defy gravity by using magnetism to drive on wall mounted whiteboards — making coding activities applicable to a range of topics, social, and way more cool.

With its interactive nature and easy setup, Root is the perfect tool for learning from authentic coding experiences at home, with teachers in classrooms, and has a social platform to share programs around the world. Root appeals to children as young as four and grows with them as a familiar and consistent platform — offering years of learning opportunities rather than days. As their coding skills improve, they’ll advance from programming with a blocks-based graphical interface (a child can use it even before they know how to read) to programming with fully text-based languages like Swift, JavaScript, and Python.

Another thing that makes Root special is the interplay with iPad. Not only is it programmed from an iPad, with Root’s app the iPad sensors can be used to interact with Root in real-time (for instance, the iPad can be programmed to act as a steering wheel.) Programs can be modified even while they’re running which facilitates the real-time debugging of code as children flexibly pause, step through, or add instructions at any point. Root also promotes agent-based thinking by showing exactly what the robot sees on the iPad.

“We have a big problem in our country, nine out of 10 parents want their kids to learn computer science but only one out of 10 elementary schools actually teach it. This leaves 58 million kids stuck in the middle not knowing how to get a computer science education,” Zee Dubrovsky, CEO of Scansorial.

“We are thrilled to support Root as it heads out to change the world of education. iRobot is committed to STEM learning and excited to see one of our alumni carry this passion forward in a startup aimed at bringing robotics and programming into homes and classrooms.“ Colin Angle, CEO of iRobot.

About Scansorial, PBC

Founded in 2016, Scansorial is a Public Benefit Corporation on a mission to make coding accessible for learners of any age. Scansorial makes robots, apps, and curricula that allow people to instantly set up, create, and share interactive coding lessons. Robots are the best way to engage in the journey of learning how digital stuff really works. Scansorial is a privately-held company headquartered in Cambridge, MA.

Root Team

The Root team has over 50 years of collective experience in launching and building consumer products (iRobot, Sonos, Apple) and software/education services (Microsoft, Disney, PLTW, Harvard, MIT). This includes launching four coding robots (Create, Kilobot, AERobot, Multiplo), launching two graphical coding environments (MIT App Inventor, Minibloq), and launching three consumer robots (Roomba, Scooba, Looj).

It is now possible to pre-order Root exclusively through Kickstarter through November 30. A limited number are priced at $145 which is only a fraction of its retail value. With a pledge of only $10, the campaign will put that money aside for schools in need that can’t afford Root. For any backers with deeper pockets, a pledge of $10,000 will put 60 Roots in a school of their choice and the campaign will promote these backers as a School Hero. Follow #SchoolHero to see who out there will step up to the plate and join this cause.

Kickstarter page: http://kck.st/2exTJN8

Plobot is a colorful coding companion that takes programming beyond the computer screen

A revolutionary robot toy helps your kids learn computational thinking through physical play

An educational robotics startup is pioneering a new way of teaching computational thinking and programming through physical interactions with command cards.

How the Plobot platform works

Plobot is an Arduino-based robot learning companion designed for four to eight year-olds. It’s designed to be a child’s first encounter with coding concepts – using cards and storytelling versus syntax and computer screens.

Each command card represents a block of code, directly triggering actions for the robot through its built-in RFID scanner. Kids can make Plobot navigate a maze of obstacles, play music, light up with different colors, sense nearby objects, and much more.

Swiping the cards in sequence strings together a ‘program’ the robot follows, with the „Play“ card working as an execute function. Amplifier cards mimic loops and conditionals, changing the effects of the other cards.

A headstart in computational thinking

By breaking down each task into a sequence of steps, kids exercise problem solving and creative thinking abilities, while picking up core coding concepts such as variables, conditionals, and loops. This helps pave the way for a foundation in computational thinking, and sparks an early interest in computer science.

Plobot can take up to 50 instructions in one sequence. With card expansion packs, Plobot provides countless possible combinations that make it one of the most versatile screen-free coding platforms in the market.

In addition to command cards, Plobot works with ‘stations’, circular pads with labels like ‘school’, ‘ice cream shop, or ‘home’ which serve as goal posts during programming activities and adds a storytelling element to the lessons.

Plobot’s exterior is made of easy to clean plastic, and kids can customize Plobot using stickers, clay, and or attaching Duplo blocks on its back.

 

A Maker’s Journey

Plobot began in 2013 as Rodolfo Cossovich’s side project. Rodolfo is an Argentinian robotics engineer and inventor who teaches robotics at New York University.

“We started with the idea that children learn best through physical play,” Cossovich shares, “The challenge was fundamentally how to make the code-learning experience more interactive and engaging without getting kids in front of computer screens.”

Plobot participated in Make in LA’s hardware tech accelerator to move the project forward. The edtech startup has developed a custom curriculum around Plobot which it has pilot-tested with hundreds of kids in international schools and coding bootcamps in Shanghai, Taipei, Buenos Aires, Washington DC, and other cities over the past year.

“Computational thinking is becoming core literacy for the next generation. Plobot gives kids a headstart. Many parents have described Plobot as a physical version of Scratch. We use this physical coding approach to help kids become better thinkers through play.”

Plobot is set to launch on crowdfunding platform Kickstarter the third week of October at a retail price of $159. An introductory price of $79 (50% off retail price) will be offered to early backers.

The Kickstarter campaign can be found here.