If you want to build a robot but don’t know where to begin, here are a few options to get you started. Whether you want to learn how to code in an interactive, hands-on way, want to wow your friends, or need a new hobby, we’ve got you covered.
littleBits is a good starter kit that packs a punch. If you’re just looking to have some fun, start with the Gizmos & Gadgets Kit. They also offer a Synth Kit — which enables you to build your very own synthesizer — and a Smart Home Kit — which can connect any object to the internet. “Automate your curtains to open at sunrise. Make a remote controlled pet feeder.” [$199.95]
Makeblock’s Starter Robot Kit is another good option. The kit allows you to build a robot tank or a three-wheeled robot car. It also includes instructions to walk you through the process. [$149.99]
Working with Arduinos is a great way to get into physical computing, especially if you’re looking for something that will give you more of a challenge off the bat but will also enable you to — eventually — accomplish more. Start small, then dream big. [$99.90]
Robotics Smart Machines is great for kids. Or for you, if you’re looking to start small. It’s simple, and provides you with eight different ‘experiments’ — robots — to create. [$129.95]
Lego’s Mindstorms EV3 give you an impressive variety of options. If you like Legos and want to make simple but impressive robotic scorpions, snakes, and more, well, you’re a human being. [$349.99]
Sparki is another good, relatively affordable beginner option. Despite being marketed as an “easy intro to robotics,” its open-source programming can take you beyond the first stages. [$159.95]
Lynxmotion’s T-Hex is a great option if you a) have a lot of money to burn, b) want to skip the programming, and c) want to impress your friends with a flashy toy. [$1,435.00]