LittleBits circuits now let kid geniuses hook up to the Internet

The snap-together circuits, a 21st-century successor to old-school engineering toys like our treasured Legos, now connect to the Internet, giving children terrifying new power.

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Using your fingers is so 20th century. LittleBits/Rick Winscot

Last year, I chronicled how LittleBits and its snap-together circuits and servos quickly drew my 6-year-old into the world of the most simple electrical engineering projects. This year, LittleBits has continued to expand, offering a space-themed kit, an Arduino module that introduces basic programming, and now the new CloudBit module that allows kids to snap the Internet onto their projects.

In other words, your children have just been given a pretty simple, inexpensive and easy-to-use onramp to the Internet of Things. So now anything that they've created with LittleBits can be controlled from anywhere via a smartphone, and even automated or connected to other hardware and online services like Twitter or Facebook via IFTTT.com.

Some of the suggested projects for the CloudBit include a remote pet feeder, rigging a doorbell to send an SMS each time someone rings, or a means of monitoring piggy bank deposits via a smartphone.

It's kind of a terrifying amount of power to gift to an elementary school student. I imagine legions of robotic My Little Pony figurines somehow driving my car into a river, or my Twitter account being hijacked to post my credit card number each time I force a certain short person to eat more broccoli.

Nonetheless, I'm making the leap. I've already placed my order for the CloudKit, and I'll report back on what my family comes up with. Let us know if you've had any experience creating with LittleBits in the comments below.

 

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