Want to build robots? Get LEGO’s Mindstorms EV3. Oh, you meant you want to build robots without losing your mind. Yeah, well, something simpler then. Maybe the MOSS robot construction kit will be more your style.
Made by Modular Robotics, it’s a system for building robots without messing with wires, codes, and fancy engineering tricks. Instead, it uses individual modules with their own unique properties that you can snap together using magnets, allowing you to build different robots with a variety of abilities.
What kind of modules come with MOSS? For now, they have action modules (spin, angle, flashlight, shoot), sensor modules (light, distance, motion, and knob), data modules for sending and receiving signals, a Bluetooth module for wireless connectivity, and a battery module for power. There’s also a bunch of accessory modules for fashioning proper-looking robots like wheels, tank treads, braces, spans and more. Each module comes with snap-on sides containing various colored plates: one color is intended for conducting power; another is meant for data input; another for data output; and a fourth color for passing both power and data. Rather than hidden magnets, the modules use large ball magnets on the corners of each module, allowing them to perform swinging, hinging, and swiveling movements when needed.
Four kits are currently being offered: one with modules for a basic light-sensing robot, a distance-sensing robot that can drive to specific destinations, a robot tank that can shoot pellets, and an advanced kit with a wide selection of modules for a variety of elaborate projects.
MOSS is currently raising funding from Kickstarter. Pledges to reserve a kit starts at $59.