Kids/Babies Maker/Development

Fun with Circuits promises a storybook beginning for engineers in training

Kids are drawn naturally to technology, but oftentimes understand little of how those pixels light up. One way to change that is by stirring the first steps to understanding electronics into a familiar learning took for young ones: the storybook

The Fun With Circuits storybook and basic block-like interactive electronics kit that introduces children to electrical circuit concepts that are fundamental to STEM education. By using storytelling complemented by inviting illustrations, children more easily understand the electrical concepts that underly all types of technology through meaningful context. Kids have to use the colorful circuit components to solve simple puzzles to advance the story. .The developers recommend the product for kids aged 6 through 10 and seek $35,000 by May 9. For $75, one can be shipped by December.

We’ve seen a number of kids’ introductions to electronics and robotics lately. Similar products to Fun With Circuits include the Codie, but there’s something unique about pairing the learning experience with a traditional book that reinforces the idea of being hands-on.

Kids/Babies Tablet Accessories

Pick up on colorful cues with Mozbii interactive stylus

The Premise. Sometimes our connected devices act as everything from babysitters to educational teachers when our children use them. The long-lasting impact of early life in front of a screen is still unknown, but for now it seems the pros safely outweigh the cons.

The Product. Mozbii is a color-selecting stylus designed with children in mind. Shaped like a lollipop and easy to hold, the stylus is crafted partially out of medical grade silica-gel and has a flexible neck. It was created to give children a new way to interact with their surroundings while they play with their tablets. Simply press Mozbii to any object in your vicinity to duplicate its color, wait for an LED light to indicate the color has been picked up, and draw with that color on several compatible apps on your tablet. There are minimal buttons, the charger port is magnetic for easier time plugging in, and the battery can last up to 10 days between charges. With a 16-bit color sensor it can recognize more than 65,000 different colors in the spectrum.

The Pitch. The original campaign video is bright and engaging, and shows how children can easily use Mozbii to “collect” and learn about different colors in their environment. The newer video featured is more of a simple demonstration by an adult who chooses colors from many objects on a table, and even includes his tee shirt and hair to paint a picture on the coloring book app. Other tidbits from the campaign page include a sneak peek at limited edition colors, product development timelines, and details to be seen in later software versions. The project is looking to fund their goal of $30,000 in 30 days.

The Perks.  Early birds who pledge $64 will receive one of the first Mozbii styluses in orange or pink. For a pledge of $15 more, you can select from one of six Mozbii colors and will even get a carrying case. Become a VIP with a pledge of $10,000 or more, which will secure you six Mozbiis, six carrying cases, a day with UFRO founder in Taipei (travel /accommodations not included), and an exclusive factory tour. You will also be one of the first to access the developer’s kit.

The Potential. The product concept is certainly unique and refreshing and has a lot of potential among parents who see value in tablets as educational tools. This technology allows children to be more aware of their environments while also incorporating the tablets that they use every day. With that said, there is much more potential for Mozbii to become a teaching tool for tots still learning about colors than what is being initially presented. The product may see more success in later versions, where the emphasis is a better hybrid of learning and fun.

Cooking Tablet Accessories

Go from culinary chump to champion chef with Drop

The Premise. Ask any college student or bachelor and most of them will agree: cooking is nowhere as easy as mom made it out to be. Whether there isn’t room in the budget to botch a meal or if anything more advanced than sandwiches and microwave pizza is too difficult, making delicious, fresh meals requires help.

The Product. In terms of actual physical product, Drop is merely a kitchen scale that connects to the iPad in order to display its results. However, the iPad app is more than a glorified scale readout. Drop can walk users through recipes, make suggestions for successful improvisation, and send alerts when it’s time to get back into the kitchen for the next step. Drop functions essentially as a powerful digital kitchen instructor that just so happens to also be a scale, supporting iPad Air, Mini, 3rd gen, and 4th gen.

The Pitch. The promotional video for Drop really captures the essence of how exhilarating it can be to correctly prepare a complex meal, whether sharing it or not. In a brief 90-second presentation, viewers get a full clear picture of almost everything Drop can do, meaning there’s no lull or dragging in the clip. The website for Drop is bright, engaging, and features a strong balance of information with images. It’s similar in many ways to other pre-order websites, but the Drop color scheme and product identity make it stand out a bit.

The Perks. Drop is expected to drop this fall, and can be pre-ordered for $80. The first 2,000 orders also don’t pay any shipping costs.

The Potential. Frankly as far as Drop is concerned, the product itself is fairly underwhelming. Smart kitchen scales have been done before, and any serious kitchen maestro probably already has one in their arsenal. Where Drop really separates itself from the competition, and does so by a very wide margin, is in the iPad app that Drop works with. Covering everything from substitute ingredients to recipe scaling based on number of diners or amount of ingredients remaining, Drop makes sure that nothing in the kitchen comes as a surprise. The presentation is great, the device looks friendly and easy to use, and the end results promise to be both attractive and tasty. Seasoned experts may not find much use for Drop, but for the less confident cooks or those just starting out, this tool promises to do more than its weight in the kitchen.