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Photos: Building blocks for bots

Lego's Mindstorms NXT may look like a kid's toy, but it's actually a robot development kit.

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Topic: Innovation
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1 of 6 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet

Mindstorms NXT

The Mindstorms NXT may look like a children's toy, but it's actually a robot development kit. A programmable controller allows anyone who buys the $249 kit--expected to hit the market in August--to create any of an infinite number of possible robots.

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2 of 6 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet

Mindstorms slogan

Lego Mindstorms director Soren Lund (center) discusses the Mindstorms NXT program in front of a slogan declaring the program's goal: "We will do for robotics what iPod did for music."

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3 of 6 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet

AlphaRex

Lego's Mindstorms robots, like the AlphaRex pictured here, are built with four sensors: ultrasonics that function as eyes, as well as those that react to light, sound or touch. The robots are Bluetooth-enabled, meaning they can be controlled by, and can control, any Bluetooth device.

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4 of 6 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet

Mindstorms

At the Consumer Electronics Show in January, Lego showed off its Mindstorms NXT kit, which will enable kids and adults alike to program Lego-based robots.

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5 of 6 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet

Lego Slot Machine

One device Lego showed off at CES in January was a programmable slot machine that can detect when someone has won and then opens up a cage on its bottom to reveal a prize.

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Bot building blocks

Lego has created several robot kits for educational purposes in its Mindstorms program.

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