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There is no shortage of STEM toys on the market, and we definitely applaud the effort. But for far too many of them, the takeaway is that you have to do an awful lot of coding for the satisfaction of making a few lights blink or playing a little tune. Luckily, we're finally seeing some STEM kits that are actually rewarding and fun, none more so than the Petoi Bittle.
Let's be honest. Most makers delve into robotics with dreams of one day making a creation that can scamper over an obstacle course like some viral video from Boston Dynamics. The Petoi Bittle is a bot that lets you achieve those dreams, and not only is it easy enough for young teenagers to get up and running, but it also has enough room to grow that engineers can tinker with it for years.
The base of this 'bot is a custom Arduino board, which coordinates all four legs and the head. The frame assembles like a puzzle, but it's only once the assembly is complete that the fun really begins. You can make it perform some basic moves by using an app that you download onto your phone or another device, and the dog won't be too old before you want to teach it some new tricks.
It's open-source and programmable with Python, C++, or Scratch, and you can even add on sensors that will open up a whole new world of possibilities. So turn your dog into a motion-sensing security bot, and teach it to play with your real-life pets. The only limits are your imagination.
Right now, you can get the Petoi Bittle: Palm-Sized Robot Dog for STEM & Fun! for $299 or $30 off.