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Monday, December 31, 2012

Toy Robots for Boys


Toy Robots for Boys

Parents shopping for toy robots have plenty to choose from, and today's toy robot manufacturers use high-grade materials that withstand frequent playtime. A number of robots are now fabricated with clean alternative energy sources, so they do not come with the need to purchase batteries on a continuous basis. Toy robots for boys vary in design according to age level, and buyers can find them for toddlers and children along with more complex models geared towards adult enthusiasts.

Toy Robots for Toddlers

Robots appropriate for toddlers are relatively simple in design and sturdy enough to withstand rough play from a lively youngster. For safety reasons, these types of toy robots for boys normally have only a few moving parts and none that detach. Some toy robots for this age group come already assembled, while others may have interlocking parts that need basic assembly from an adult.

Toy Robots for Children

Once young robot enthusiasts reach elementary-school age, they are normally ready to learn beginning robot kit building. A basic kit comes with several parts that snap together without the need for tool use. With an adult's supervision, putting together one of these toy robots for boys is both fun and educational. This project is a good way to introduce skills such as following printed instructions and comparing a finished robot to a printed instructional diagram.  Some popular choices include:
  • The Salt Water Fuel Cell Monster Truck Kit
  • The 6-in-1 Educational Solar Kit
  • The Super Solar Racing Car
Each of these toy robot kits provides a fun introduction to scientific concepts such as kinetics and green energy. By completing a toy robot kit, children can get a good idea of how these areas of science apply in the real world outside their classrooms.

Toy Robots for Adults

Enthusiasm for robot-building projects does not fade for many adults, and a number of people continue this kind of hobby while pursuing career fields in science or engineering fields. Toy robot kits for adults can come with large numbers of parts to be attached by soldering or similar methods. Some of these advanced robot kits may also require builders to fabricate certain parts themselves out of scrap metal or other materials. Many adult robot builders greatly enjoy these kinds of toy robots because they present rewarding challenges and allow the robot hobbyists to use their existing technical skills in creative ways. Some available toy robot kits for adults include:
  • The Robotic Arm Edge
  • The programmable WAO Kranius robot
  • The Beamster kit for introducing or reviewing soldering techniques
Toy robots for boys are available for all age groups, and they range from simple to quite complex. Kit robots are designed to teach and reinforce applied scientific concepts, and builders can try more advanced kits whenever they feel ready for them. Contact us for robotics kit listings and prices today.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Robotics Education for Children

Benefits of Robotics Education for Children

Children from preschool to high school age can gain plenty of advantages by learning robotics. Adding this activity either at home or in school will enhance their overall science education in several ways, including:
  • Improvement in following instructions
  • Ability to see a project through to completion
  • Better understanding of concepts such as motion physics, engineering and even green technology.
  • Enhanced problem-solving skills through testing robots for functionality. 
Although reading and studying are important, science courses that include these types of hands-on activities are more enjoyable for the students and more successful for their teachers. Unfamiliar science and engineering concepts can be challenging for some students to grasp by reading alone, particularly for those who are kinesthetic learners. Those who apply those same concepts to a robotics project can retain the material at a much better rate and subsequently score higher on science exams.

Robotics Training

Several sources exist for top-notch robotics education. Interested children can attend robotics camps or participate in after-school science enrichment programs. These can be excellent places for introducing beginners to the steps of putting together kit robots and checking that all parts are working correctly. More experienced robot builders at the middle- and high school levels can complete robotics projects from scratch and enter them in science fairs. These students can even form school robotics clubs where they can share tips and ideas for successful robot-building. Outside of schools, camps and after-school programs, kids and their parents can try robotics projects at home by purchasing kits from beginner to advanced levels.

Robotics Kits for Children

Best-selling robotics kits for younger kids usually have fewer and simpler parts that can be snapped together without the need for any tools. These kits can be great introductions to robot-building fundamentals, including following written instructions and examining diagrams. Some basic robot kits also include salt water fuel cell batteries or mini-solar panels, and these can be fun instructional aids for learning about alternative sources of energy. Favorite beginning robotics kits include:
  • The Salt Water Fuel Cell Car
  • The 3 in 1 Solar Stallion
  • The Frightened Grasshopper
  • The Happy Hopping Frog 
Older kids who have mastered the basics can move on to more advanced robot kits that require more building steps, more intricate instructions and the use of tools such as screwdrivers. These types of kits are designed to expand on existing skills and knowledge, and some popular kits are:
  • The Robotic Arm Edge
  • The 3-in-1 All Terrain Robot
  • The Moonwalker II
Robotics education is worth adding to an existing science classroom curriculum or pursued as a hobby for interested builders of all ages. Getting started is as simple as purchasing a beginning kit and giving it a try. Contact us for robotics kit types and pricing today.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Interesting Facts on Solar Robot Kits

Solar Power and Robotics

Some of the most popular robotic kits are also the friendliest towards the environment. Current solar technology has allowed kit designers to include solar panels to replace batteries that would eventually end up in landfills. Solar-powered robots can range from simple to complex, and they can be an excellent way for beginners to learn exactly how this alternative energy source works. Attaching and charging a robot's solar panel is a perfect hands-on way for builders of all ages to explore the applications of this clean-energy technology.

What is Solar Power?

Solar power refers to the conversion of sunlight into electricity by a direct process called the photovoltaic effect. This technology relies on a semiconductor to pull radiation from the sun's rays and convert it into a direct electrical current. Another type is known as concentrated solar power, which relies on a system of reflective lenses or mirrors to generate an indirect electrical current when exposed to strong sunlight.

The direct method with photovoltaics is used for both large and small-scale solar panels made with a specific number of solar cells. Some of the first devices to use this technology were single-cell solar-powered calculators. The modern solar robot is powered with the same basic technology, though sometimes with more than one cell.

How to Use Solar Power to Drive a Robot's Motor

A robot kit's motor works with a direct electrical current that comes from at least one charged solar cell. Depending on the complexity and difficulty level of a robot kit, the builder will need to attach each of the cells to the robot either by epoxy gluing or by soldering for more advanced kits. Solar robot cells act as receptacles for sunlight, and different robot motors require solar cells that can be charged to a certain voltage. The needed number of volts typically depends on the size of the robot, its number of moving parts and the electric power required to fuel them. Many robot kit solar cells attach to the motor with simple wires by soldering or with locking connectors found in some beginning level kits.

Solar Robot Kits Available from OWI

A number of OWI's most popular solar robot kits provide young builders a challenging but fun project that teaches some fundamentals of science and engineering. Assembling an environmentally friendly robot will demonstrate the benefits and possibilities of solar power as an emissions-free power source. For beginning to intermediate robot kit enthusiasts, some favorites include:

6-in-1 Educational Solar Kit. This robot kit is designed for beginners and does not require seperate tools to attach the parts together. Options include building a small solar-powered windmill or one of two toy airplanes. 

7-in-1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers. Robot builders can put together several different toy vehicles with this beginner-friendly kit. One big selling point is its high-caliber solar cell that recharges to full power in only minutes. 

The Solar System was featured in Educational Dealer Magazine as "one of the items most ordered at the NSSEA show...Great New Products from Ed Expo."

Solar robot kits are a fun, educational and creative means of learning about this type of energy-efficient technology. Interested robot builders of all ages and levels are encouraged to visit us at www.owirobot.com for more details. Buyers are also welcome to contact us with any questions.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Top Robotic Companies in the World

The top robotic companies in the world focus their energy on creating top-notch products and providing customers with the best possible instructional resources available. These businesses also devote significant time and manpower to researching the latest technologies in the field of robotics. Incorporating these innovations into the newest robotic kits translates into more challenging and fulfilling experiences for all levels of robotic enthusiasts. In addition to technology research, these companies are committed to accessible education in robotics for anyone interested in learning about this exciting part of the science and engineering fields.

Recognizable Names in the Robotics Industry

The following list of robotic companies include several leaders in the industry, and several of them have gained excellent reputations for applying robot technology to specific niche areas. 
  • The Science Kit Center - This company offers a range of beginner robot kits that have impressive end results. New builders can assemble a robot that catches and throws a ball back to them or one that moves in response to audio stimuli. Each of these robot kits is designed for ease of construction, and they also introduce beginners to robotic concepts such as basic binary command input.
  • Mekatronix - A top feature of this robotic company is its extensive set of resources for science and technology educators. Mekatronix develops specialized curriculum for both secondary schools and university robotics engineering courses, and the company provides free starter packets to teachers who want to start student robotics clubs. These instructional materials are high quality supplements to Mekatronix's extensive catalog of robotic kits and accessories. 
  • Lynxmotion - Robotic hobbyists and professionals, both give this company high marks for its custom kits that Lynxmotion developers have created from scratch. This company has one of the biggest varieties in kits designed for all experience levels. Each kit is fabricated from top quality materials, which results in a sophisticated robot that accepts a variety of human commands. 
  • OWI Robotics - In 1980, OWI Incorporated, was looking for a way to expand its consumer product lines and bring its extensive technology background to the educational community. RobotiKits™ and OWIKits® were developed to affordably introduce students to robotics, science and solar technology. OWI Robotics is the leading supplier of robotic, aluminum bug kits, building and solar kits, to schools, science clubs, science education centers and science camps. The kits are available at hobby, educational, toy and museum stores nationwide. The kits are available in five difficulty levels - raning from beginners with no experience, up to advanced circuit board soldering and mechanical assembly -- challenging builders from grade school to adult. In conjunction with educators, OWI Robotics has developed a fully structured teaching curriculum with modules tailored to the kit's unique electronic and mechanical features. 

Cutting Edge Robotic Products and Services

These top robotic companies are reshaping the industry by making both materials and resources available to anyone interested in learning about this dynamic field. Each business has goals of educating the public about the possibilities in robotics and how it could possibly shape other areas in the future. Manufacturing, energy production and even daily household chores are just a few such examples that are already seeing changes due to robotics technology.

Company Instructional Resources

Lynxmotion, Mekatronix, OWI Robotics and The Science Kit Center all rank among the top robotics companies due to their emphasis on product excellence and on education. Their research and development teams work consistently to make the best quality robotic kits available to consumers. Each company also provides plenty of user-friendly learning resources for robotic beginners. These factors indicate that all four companies employ developers who understand that robotics is a field that moves at the high speed of technology, and it is also a valuable medium for teaching complex science concepts. Readers who are interested in learning more can contact us for robotics details. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Year of Jubilee Reviews, Reviews our 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers

OWI, Inc. - 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers has now claimed three awards: 2012 Top Toy of the Year Award, 2012 Product of the Year Award, and Best Vacation Product.

Now these are the toys I love most for my boys!! Innovative, and cutting edge! All boys love robots, why not give them the best, award winning kits!

In this kit, all of the parts snap together, no need for tools and screws or glue. It is easy to assemble the 5 vehicles and 2 charging stations. If you have SUN, you have power! Love it. They are learning not only about making robots and assembly, but the use of harnessing the sun's solar energy.

The parts within the 5 vehicles are interchangeable, thus you can only make one at a time. That is the only down side I saw to this kit. I personally would have liked to see a kit where you could make a couple of vehicles, making it easier for children to play together with one kit. because it is made of plastic I do have a slight concern that over time, clicking and snapping the pieces back and forth into various cars will break down the plastic and make some pieces unusable over time.

The solar panel is super slick, and I love how the recharging station is set up. I love teaching toys and I strongly feel that this one is superb in that!


This kit is only one out of nearly 40 products! They are priced very reasonable for the robotics involved. Check out just a couple of OWI's other products to get a feel for what you will find on their website.

Reach the full review



Thursday, November 15, 2012

Robotics for Beginners

Building a working robot may sound like an intimidating project, but newcomers have plenty of educational resources available to help get them started. A number of robotic kits are created specifically with first-time builders in mind. Robotics for beginners is an exciting and rewarding undertaking, and it is an excellent way to learn a range of scientific concepts. These include mechanics, the physics of motion, the use of energy sources and even basic programming as it applies to robotics. The only real prerequisites for beginners of any age, is a desire to learn and a willingness to investigate why a robotic project may not work perfectly the first time around.

Basic Parts and Tools
Robotic kits typically start simple and move up in complexity as each builder gains more confidence and experience. The most basic kits are designed to first teach beginners proper tool usage, and many kits include tools such as:
  • Fuel cell batteries
  • Wrenches and screwdrivers specially sized for robotics projects
  • Solar cell battery packs
Beginner kits typically come with all needed parts already fabricated, and the builder's main job is to fit them together correctly. These kits include printed instructions, so checking for possible mistakes is a relatively simple process. A number of kits for younger beginners have parts that lock together without the need for any separate tools.


Types of Kits for Beginners

Some of the most popular kits instruct newcomers in building robotic toy cars, trucks and transformer robots. Many of these are powered with rechargeable fuel cell or solar-powered batteries, and building with them is a fun way to learn exactly how these sources of alternative energy work. A few favorite kits for beginners contain fuel cells that run on salt water. One important part of robotics for beginners is learning how to assemble these clean-energy mechanisms correctly.


Learning Robotics for Beginners

Kit instructions are good places to start for learning robotics, but many beginners benefit from more interactive lessons. A good number of helpful video tutorials are available online, and some robotic enthusiasts also offer tips to newcomers through forums and blogs. Robotic camps provide face-to-face instruction and demonstrations of the possibilities associated with learning this exciting hobby. As newcomers master basic robot building from kits, they can gradually move into completing more advanced projects that require more technical knowledge. In these cases, a robotics camp is one of the best choices for getting the most out of this educational opportunity.

Scientific Concepts in Robotics Education

Robotics for beginners teaches the practical application of several different science disciplines, and many newcomers do not initially realize how much they are learning from assembling a robot from a kit. Putting the needed parts together introduces basic concepts of kinetics, and assembling a robot's rechargeable power sources teaches the specific function of clean energy. Learning beginning robotics can help anyone actively understand these ideas on a better level. For more details on how to get started, interested beginners can contact us for robotic kits information.

Friday, November 2, 2012

November Robot Kit Giveaway

We're continuing our monthly giveaway contest into November! Enter below as many times as you like, in as many ways as you like, to gain points. The more points you accrue, the better your chances are of winning. The winner will be announced at the end of the month and contacted via email. All entries are free!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Family Review Center Gives Our 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers Prestigious Gold Award

Read their full review here



DESCRIPTION: An innovative solar science kit that encourages children to exercise their sense of creativity and imagination. It features all snap together plastic parts (no screws, tools required), solar panel and accessories. It is incredibly easy to assemble the 7 different modules: 2 power charging stations and 5 different vehicles.

The transforming rechargeable station has 2 output plugs; one for solar recharging and the other for battery recharging. Amazingly, the battery charging station can bring the selected unit to full power in about 5 seconds and the solar recharging station will fully recharge in approximately 120 seconds. The fun time - run time is approximately 50-80 seconds.

Similar to OWI's other mini solar kits, if you have sun, you have power. Enjoy five different vehicles: Solar Car, Concept Car, Bulldozer, Dump Truck and Concept Racer (1.87"x1.74"x3.64"), Concept racer (1.02"x1.74"x4.18")

REVIEWER NOTES: With this kit you can create 5 different solar powered vehicles (one at a time). Comes with a power station that allows you to recharge the vehicles with sun or battery. It takes about 2 minutes to fully recharge it using solar power, and about 5 seconds using battery power. It will then run for about a minute to a minute and a half once fully charged. The 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers are easy to snap together, so children will usually not need assistance from any adult but adults may want to supervise, just to get in on the fun!

This is a great way to introduce children to the power of solar energy. A simple way to explain it and see it in action. Our favorite was the Concept Racer. We would love to hear which one was your favorite, once you try them out!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Benefits of Robotics for Kids

Robotic education provides kids opportunities to learn core science concepts with a fun, active approach. One of the biggest challenges to teaching young students science is demonstrating these concepts in an engaging way. Robotic kits are designed to help kids learn how solar power works, how physics allow motion and how machines function with the correct commands from humans.

Assembling and experimenting with robotics is ideal for kinaesthetic learners of any age group. These are the students who have difficulty sitting at desks and reading or writing down word definitions or similar material. The ideas have little meaning for these learners unless they get to put them into practice. For example, building and manipulating hands-on projects. Building with robotic kits benefits these kids by connecting science and technology concepts to real-world applications.

Robotics for Kids in Practice and Research

Kids who begin learning robotics early, often develop more confidence in themselves and positive attitudes towards taking on challenging tasks, whether in science or other areas. Some research indicates that young learners who work independently on basic robotics kit projects, strengthen their abilities to follow detailed instructions. They can also improve their problem solving skills over time by completing a series of robotic kits that gradually increase in difficulty. Not every kid may move on to become a dedicated hobbyist who creates original mechanical projects, but all of them can benefit from the skills they will learn with educational robotic kits.

Some other useful concepts kids will learn from robotics include how tools and machine parts work together. Each robotic kit comes with prefabricated parts that need to be fitted together in a specific way for the entire project to work correctly. Working with robotic components and required tools may take practice and will probably not go smoothly the very first time, but these kinds of tasks are instrumental in helping kids develop patience, dedication and persistence.

Robotic Kits Available for Kids

Available kits range from simple to complex and many kids with no previous experience can put together beginning projects successfully. The complexity and difficulty of any finished device depends on the end results. Putting together a solar-powered set of model-sized vehicles will foster understanding of how the included solar panels convert sunlight to energy. The same type of robotic kit also allows for individual creativity. One popular example is the beginner level 7-in-1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers.

Another kit that lets kids put educational robots into action is the 3-in-1 All Terrain Robot. The finished robot can move in multiple directions with the use of a wired remote control. Finishing and experimenting with this robotic project is a fun way for kids to learn the basics of motion dynamics. This type of project also encourages development of hand-eye coordination.

A more advanced kit for young robot enthusiasts is the Weasel, a robot with plenty of high-tech features. The completed Weasel comes fitted with a photo sensor, can navigate its way around a line and has a wall sensor!

Each of these robotic kits demonstrates the potential of educational robotics as either a supplement or an addition to a standard science curriculum. Completing these hands-on projects builds both concept understanding and reinforces kids' confidence in their own abilities. Other benefits include improved problem-solving skills and creative decision-making capabilities.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Research in Education Robotics for Kids

As technology moves forward by leaps and bounds, the educational needs of our children must change. Science and technology have become integral in our daily lifestyles, and as a result, there is more of a need than ever for children to be exposed to concepts and ideas that can make them competitive in the global economy. One area that is certain to see more growth is robotics. Below are some of the way that robotics can be essential to your child's education.

Benefits of Robotics for Kids

Research in education robotics for kids, show that children who have exposure to robotics tend to do better in the fields of science, technology engineering and math (STEM). These fields are more important than every globally, and their importance will not be lessening any time soon. Research in robotics education for kids, show that if you want your child to be a viable part of tomorrow's economy, STEM skills are invaluable.

  • Robotics help to foster creativity and problem-solving skills. There are countless applications of robot technology at play in the modern world. They all share one thing in common: they all provide a solution to an existing problem. Whether they robotics are used on a factory assembly line, or in a hospital operating room, or a NASA lab, robots provide creative solutions that augment our human abilities. Research in education robotics for kids, show that early exposure helps to foster technical creativity when faced with problems.
  • Exposure to robotics helps to build confidence. Nothing inspires like a completed task. Kids everywhere love being presented with challenges, and they love meeting and exceeding expectations. Robotic technology allows kids to identify problems and develop ideas to fix them, and then build the conceived solution. In a world that can often leave people with little to no autonomy, this is unbelievably empowering for anyone, especially a child.
  • Research in robotic education for kids show that robotics classes help foster stronger peer grouping in the classroom. Collaborative projects and group research help strengthen children's social bonds and identity. Spending time working with peers to create and develop solutions to real-world issues, help children find their voice - and helps to develop the compassion to hear the voice of others. 
Stronger peer connections, empowerment through problem-solving, creativity, and more career options - robotics technology can enrich your child's life in many ways. Don't get blinded by the research in education robotics for kids, though. Above all else, robotics are fun for everyone!

Robotics for Kids in Practice and Research

Research in robotic education for kids makes it apparent that the next area of growth in the field is developing a new generation of research scientists that are comfortable with robotics as a concept. The availability of affordable and effective robotic tools for children makes the development of the scientists of tomorrow that much easier.

Robotic Kits Available for Kids

Thankfully, there are so many option available that offers a wide variety of robotic sets for kids. We offer several sets for kids that fit virtually any temperament and interest level. Solar-powered robots, transforming robots, 3-in-1 multi-part kits or robotic insects. At OWI Robotics, we try and help foster the scientists of tomorrow!

Contact us now at OWI Robotics for more information about robotics for kids!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Robotics Projects for Engineering Students

An Introduction to Programming Robots

A robot requires to be programmed; it is basic instructions on what it is supposed to execute. This is because without programming, the robot is considered as a machine without inbuilt intelligence.

What is Robotic Programming?

Robotics programming is basically assigning a set of instructions for the robot to execute. The programming is responsible for the artificial intelligence fed into the robots system.

Robotics Programming Language

Most robots are programmed from scratch while others are embedded with a pre-existing programming framework.


  • RAIL - Considered the best programming language for robotics projects that require manipulation and vision.
  • AML - Acronym for a Manufacturing Language, it was developed by the IBM Corporation. It is a sub-routine and implemented to manage assembly robots and Cartesian arm for hydraulic machines.
  • VAL - Acronym for Variable Assembly Language which is designed with a simple syntax, hence, can be used by anyone.
  • AL - AL robot language is a product of the Stanford University Artificial Lab, hence the initials. Also, based on Pascal, it incorporates a big mainframe computer and several hardware components like memory and a floating processor. 
  • RPL - It was designed by SRI International and can be used by an unskilled programmer because of its simple syntax. It is designed for checking, improving and correcting control algorithms. 
Where to find Robot Programming Code?
Programming code can be bought or comes with a robotics kit from the manufacturer. In some instances, it is embedded in the robot before assembly. In the case of assembly from scratch, software manufacturers offer other simple programs that are also as effective.

Our Robots
Since 1980, we have ventured into expanding our consumer base and product range, while giving back to the educational community. We also venture to supply engineering students and other hobbyists in their various areas of specialty; robotics and solar technology.

Types of Projects Completed by Robotic Engineering Students
Previous models of robots are in our midst; we might not fully realize when the interaction happens, but they have become an integral part of our society today. These robots are the previous brain children of engineering students who worked hard to make our society better and more convenient.
  • Line Follower - This type of robot has a sensor embedded in its system or chassis and it is programmed to seek a predetermined line, hence the name. The line guides the robots to do an iterative job, hence creating a routine. A good example is the Weasel robot.
  • Obstacle Avoidance - This robot employs the phenomena of insect like antennas. These antennas help the robot to avoid obstacles by changing direction. 
  • BEAM Robots -  The acronym BEAM, stands for Biology, Electronics, Aesthetic and Mechanics. They mimic real living creatures; a good example is the Salt Water Fuel Cell Giant Arachnoid Kit.
New Robotic Project Ideas
Engineers can use the existing knowledge on robotics to come up with new types of robots for new applications. Some exquisite ideas include:
  • Voice operated fire detecting and extinguishing robot equipped with a camera and vocal processors that can be controlled offsite. In addition, it should have a sprinkler to extinguish fire based on voice commands.
  • Mobile phone controlled robot; for scheduling tasks like one would by calling home or work. Can use both text or voice calls to receive messages.
We have some of these robots already in the pipeline at www.owirobot.com. Feel free to check them out and experience it yourself!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Introduction to Programming Robots

What is Robotics programming?

When the average person thinks of robotics or robotics programming, images of science fiction mechanized androids like C3P0 or R2D2 tend to come to mind. Robotics, however, is a highly specialized hobby and area of study, and brings together the varied disciplines of mechanical engineering, manufacturing, electronics and computer science in fascinating and exciting ways. Robotics programming is the use of various programming languages and programmable devices to design the complex algorithms which control a robot's behavior, resourcefullness, and automation abilities. This code is often transferred to microcontrollers which offer a small and portable way to run the code without having to attach a large, power-dependent controller like a personal computer or a laptop.

Robotics programming languages

There are several options when it comes to the language used to program a robotic device, from the most basic to advanced, specific forms of well-known programming languages. The choice of programming language depends on several factors, the most important of which are one's goals in creating a robot and any previous familiarity one might have with a language. For example, for an experienced C programmer, C would be a good choice. If he or she is planning to create a simple robot, coding in Assembly would be excessively complicated for very little gain.

Assembly: Assembly is the most basic of all programming languages, and involves the programmer telling the machine directly what to do. The tools available to the programmer are only the most basic arithmetic operations and a few others. Advanced input and output functions or control loops have to be created by hand. This language give the programmer a lot of power and leads to code that is small in size and extremely efficient, but it is very difficult to learn and master.

C: C is much easier to learn and use than Assembly, but still offers considerable power and portability for robot applications. Considering the wide usage of C code in all manner of technical and computing areas, there is a wealth of resources available online and in print for learning to program in C.

Basic: Basic is another popular programming language, which was built with an extensive focus on ease of use. Robotics programming using Basic can therefore be considerably faster and easier than using other programming languages, but the tradeoff is that microcontrollers programmed with Basic are somewhat less powerful than their C or Assembly counterparts.

Where to find robot programming code

For some programming code that's readily available on the internet, it would be a good idea to check our the CLARAty Project, a system of recyclable robotics software. The project is a collaborative work between the Universities of Minnesota and Carnegie Mellon, as well as NASA's Ames Research Center and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. A wide variety of advanced modules are available for public download.

Another great choice for getting started is to utilize the Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio platform, a well-supported and well-maintained framework for creating a wide range of robots. Microsoft provides an extensive library of tutorials and sample code, and the latest build even includes support for building robots that utilize a Kinect sensor!

Robotics from OWI Robot
Anybody who is interested in computer engineering should consider robotics programming - a rewarding lifetime hobby might even come of it! Even those experienced with robotics programming should consider finding their next robotics kit at www.owirobot.com. We offer a wide selection of robots in a variety of sizes, styles and functions all at affordable prices, and we're sure to offer something that will be a blast to program!

Monday, August 20, 2012

The Review Wire Reviews our 7-in-1 Rechargeable Solar Transformer

Click here to be taken to the reviewers website.

Back to school doesn't only have to be all about supplies and books. I received this 7-in-1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers kit from OWI Robotics to keep the kids busy. This innovative solar science kit encourages children to exercise their sense of creativity and imagination. OWI is all about science, their Robotikits and OWIKits were developed to affordably introduce students to robotics, science and solar technology.

I gave this to my thirteen year old to build. He had it completed in about 20 minutes.

The five different vehicles that you can transform the kit into include: Solar Car, Concept Car, Bulldozer, Dump Truck and Concept Racer. He started with the charging station and the concept car. The instructions were a bit confusing but he managed to get it. You do need a sharp pair of scissors to cut the pieces away from their holder. Unfortunately, he found out the hard way when one of the pieces snapped in half. Luckily it was only a stabilizer piece and he was able to continue.

The first picture below is the power charging station that comes with 2 output plugs. One plug is for the solar recharging, which is shown with the black top and one is for the battery recharging, the blue battery that is sticking out to the right. The station opens and then folds compactly to resemble a truck. This recharging station can charge the battery in about 5 seconds and the solar panel in about 120 seconds.


The instructions state that the run time of the vehicle is about 50-80 seconds before needing a charge. But when we took the car outside with the solar panel attached, it just kept going...until the panel was out of direct sunlight. All the cars except the Solar Car can take either the solar panel or battery to charge.

My little one had fun chasing this around outside...who said science was boring!?

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Best Way to Start and Learn Robotics

First and foremost, getting your hands on some robotics equipment launches you into the world of robotics in a way that no amount of preparation can match. You can read about robotics, watch online videos, and even see demonstrations. Any learning you can do to build your knowledge and understanding helps a lot, but learning robotics truly starts when you have your own kit or equipment to begin tinkering with.

How to Start and Learn About Robotics

For most robotic enthusiasts, breaking into this field starts with simple machines and straight-forward functions. You won't be building surgical tools or inventing your own personal butler right away, but even your first projects will delight and amaze you and your friends. Once you start powering your own robotics and getting them to perform simple functions, you'll be hungry to learn more, and your experience can snowball into expertise with time and a little patience.

Is Robotics Complicated?

The world of robotics is definitely complex, but that doesn't mean robotics has to be complicated at the beginning. In fact, some of the best robots are the most efficient ones. You can decide for yourself just what sort of robotics interest you and how much time, energy and resources you want to spend on developing more complicated projects.

Is Robotics Expensive?

With tons of robotic kits and equipment under $20, it's really up to you on how to spend. When you get into robotics, you might end up wanting to buy plenty of different kits and accessories, but you can start small. Compared to the cost of movie theater tickets, ski trips, and plenty of other entertainment and hobby options. Robotics certainly costs less than many things, considering the hours of enjoyment you'll get out of it.
 

Online Information to Learn Robotics

The internet offers a wealth of information and support for robotics fans. Besides our blog, you can ask questions and get advice on how to learn robotics from community forums. You can also follow exciting projects like NASA's Robotics Alliance Project. YouTube has plenty of tutorial videos as well, and you can search Google for robotic clubs in your own hometown that offer workshops. OWI Robotics has a great YouTube channel.

Use of Robotic Kits to Learn

Starting with kits makes learning robotics easier and more accessible. With set instructions and all the right components, you can go step-by-step to ensure that you won't become frustrated or disappointed at first. When you learn with kits, you get used to knowing all the important parts of a successful robotic project. Kits also make easy gifts to help get your friends involved with you. You can take on do-it-yourself projects later as you build your expertise, but when starting out you'll want the guidance that a great kit provides. Contact us for robotic kits and you can get started in no time. Browse our site to get a feel for your options, and let us know if you have any questions!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Tips to Finding Great Venues for Robot Camps

How to Start and Learn About Robotics

Let's say you're looking to create a device that moves freely around a solid surface on wheels and is actually able to interact with the environment around it, learning how to properly craft and assemble such robots is an incredible skill that, although fascinating and inspiring, does take a some amount of know-how in order to create the desired animatronic that moves and performs in the desired way. Whether you have some experience with robots before or are green and completely new to the subject, there are several ways you can gain the desired knowledge to begin starting on your very own 7-in-1 Robot Kit.

Is Robotics Complicated

Robotics ranges from rather simplistic to extremely complicated; it all depends what you want the robot to do. Starting off, there are general functions you can program into a robot that takes only basic know-how. However, when you want the equipment to fully interact with the environment, without your real-time handling, it takes extensive engineering and electronic knowledge to do so.

Is Robotics Expensive?

You can build robots from just about anything you have in your house, so if there are old electronics, cables and wires sitting around, you can strip the equipment and use it with your robot. Most necessary equipment is inexpensive; although computer integrated hardware does begin to add a hefty price tag to the project.

Online Information to Learn Robotics

The Internet is an excellent location to gain valuable insight into robotics design. From building a robot to programming the equipment, it literally is possible to learn everything you need to over the internet. Sites like Piclist.com, MsTracey.btinternet.co.uk, owirobot.com and Sparkfun.com are all excellent locations to start when you want to learn.

Use of Robotic Kits to Learn

Robot kits are great ways to learn about the technology and how to craft a robot, all with instructions. This is an excellent building block to push you towards creating your own robot eventually.

Robotic Camps for 2012

One of the best ways to begin learning about robotics is through the aid of a camp. These camps provide instruction on the design and craft of building a robot, so whether you are experienced or new, there are instructions capable of showing you exactly what you need to do and answer any question you may have about the design and crafting process.

What to Expect at a Robotics Camp

If you have never been to a robotics camp, you need to know what to expect before venturing out. These camps are filled with other interested individuals who have a passion to create their own robots. Here you can share your current knowledge with new friends, and with the structured class-like setting of the camps, you are shown how to manipulate and develop your own robots, all under the instructions of professionals. Here, you can have all your questions answered and learn new techniques to improve your craft once you return home.

Robotics from OWI

There is a large line of robotics from OWI, which allow you to build an impressive array of different designs, all capable of performing different actions. Some of which are even solar powered, so you don't have to worry about integrating a battery system. Just remember, if you have a question pertaining to robotics, are interested in summer camps or just want to learn more about how robotics work, make sure to contact us with any question you have as we are happy to help you in any way possible.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

ToysAreTools.com Reviews Our 7-in-1 Rechargeable Solar Transformer

Read the full review here

DOES: a build and play set where building is over half the fun; instant kid magnet at the park; car charges don't last long but the cars are fast; charging by battery takes just seconds; battery charger included
INVEST: $26.95 depending on retailer
TOOLS: Social Scene Helper, Think Like a Scientist/Engineer
Giveaway Details Below

If my son could have his way, he would buy all the science kits that are made for boys his age. But the truth is, I don't buy that many for him. Many science kits on the market today are not very open-ended. As with some craft kits that many girls may be purchasing, some science kits can also be too "one-note" as Number 5's mom would say.

However, when I saw OWI's 7-in-1 Transformers Kit and saw the video of a little solar car zipping around, I figured if there was any solar kit that sang more than one not, this would be it.

But when we got it, I made a conclusion about my knowledge of science kits.

Watch the video review above

Do you remember what models looked like? Not the runway kind but those plastic models that boys used to do "back in the day"? This kit reminds me a little of that except this time, there are solar panels! The models of yesteryear were a challenge to build but then sort of sat there until your mom threw it away. This kit may not contain as much of that challenge because you can surely finish it on the same day however, you can really play with it afterwards - a huge plus for us.

Read the full review on www.toysaretools.com here

Friday, July 6, 2012

July's Free Robot Giveaway

We're continuing our monthly free robot giveaway below. Be sure to enter, after all it's free!


  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Kiddie Corner Deals Reviews Our Salt Water Fuel Cell Monster Truck

Check out the excerpt from kiddiescornerdeals.com. Click read more for the full review.

Gavyn has had an interest in building since a very young age. Now that he is getting older, he wants to explore different options. He is a big fan of Legos and K'Nex and will bring his buckets down daily. He enjoys building with his dad, and as a parent I love all the benefits building provides. They use their imaginations, fine motor skills, problems solving skills and numerous other benefits. But a company I was introduced to has taken building to an entire new level by introducing robotic kits for kids and adults that familiarizes children to robotics, science and solar technology. OWI Robotics offer RobotiKits and OWIKits in different levels for beginners to advance. The kits are unique, fun and educational.

We chose the Salt Water Fuel Cell Monster Truck as Gavyn still enjoys large trucks but he was going to learn quite a bit with this kit. The kit includes plastic parts and mechanical parts; motor with connections, pinion gear and gear.


My husband helped Gavyn with the kit and he highly recommends having needle nose pliers available if you have large fingers, as the parts are small; such as the pistons and rods. Do not cut off all the parts ahead of time, do this as you go by steps as the plastic they are attached to has the letters and numbers of the parts that you'll need. The instructions are step-by-step with alphanumeric numbers for the parts, showing what parts are required to be assembled.


Once mixed you'll remove the fuel cell plate, cover and magnesium sheet to add salt water on the nonwoven fabric. Replace everything and watch the truck move. I timed our monster truck and it ran for about 15 minutes before having to add more salt water. I couldn't just test it on carpets, so outdoors Gavyn and I went to see how well it did on different terrain types such as rocks, dirt, grass and hills. We were all surprised at the monster truck chugging away.



Many thanks to kiddiescornerdeals.com! Click here to read the full review.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Grandson Reviews Our 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Tranformer

From www.blessedelements.com. Read the actual post here

I'm taking the youngest grandson with me on my travels which leaves the two older ones at home. I really hate to leave them but they have school. To make it up to them I'm leaving each something really cool to play with while I'm gone. I'm leaving Mr. K with the OWI 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers. He gets to use his reading skills and follow the directions to put it together. I love that this will really get him to use his thinking skills to put it together.



This is a solar science kit just begging to be put together and encourage creativity. I love projects that reward kids with a sense of pride and accomplishment and this product will do that.

Doing it himself should be a fun project as it has all snap together plastic parts (no screws, tools required) It has 7 different modules: 2 power charging stations and 5 different vehicles that are a Solar Car, Concept Car, Bulldozer, Dump Truck and Concept Racer. He will also get a chance to learn and apply solar energy. He loves science so this will be right up his alley.

The 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformer has been selected as a TDMonthly Magazine May Issue Staff Pick.



I stopped in to visit the grand children and asked Mr. K how he did with the 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers kit I left for him. He proudly smiled and retrieved it from his room. He was really pleased that he did it all himself and was really fascinated by how it worked and the concept of solar energy. He gave it a test run for me and showed me how he could power up his car with the transforming station.

He also told me his plans of using it for a science project and how he is going to learn more about solar energy. I just love it when a toy inspires a child to want to learn more and helps them make responsible choices as well to alternative fuel choices. You can check out more products by OWI Robotics here to inspire your child to being creative and learn about responsible choices for our Earth's environment.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Basic Robotic Tools You Need to Start a Hobby

OWI loves robotics so much because we see it as a constructive hobby that can provide a lifetime of learning and fun. A great way to get into this engrossing pastime is to start with some basic robotic kits. We have a number of kits suitable for the beginning hobbyist who wants to build a robot 'from scratch' without having to make a list of parts. Here are a few robots we would recommend you to consider:

  • Hyper Peppy: This kit, as with all of our products, comes completely unassembled with easy-to-understand instructions. Once built, it uses a sensor and programming to detect when it bumps into an object, and then backs itself up and turns left to avoid the obstacle! All of the components of basic robotics are demonstrated in this kit.


  • 3-in-1 All Terrain Robot (ATR): What's great about our ATR kit is that it can be built and rebuilt in three unique configurations: the Rover, which is unstoppable on rough terrain; the Forklift, a miniature industrial forklift; or the Gripper, which uses robotic arms to lift its load. It's easy to disassemble one mode and rebuild into another. Giving any hobbyist plenty of chances to learn the ins and outs of basic robotics.

  • Robotic Arm Edge: The best way to learn about robotic arms is by building our Robotic Arm Edge. After assembly, the Edge can be controlled by the user with a five-switch wired controller, which regulates five motors to help fully articulate the movement of each distinct joint. This award winning kit is another great way to jump right into the hobby head-first.




Parts and Tools to Build a Basic Robot From Scratch

Maybe you want to take a more challenging path and purchase individual parts and tools to build a robot from scratch. Here is a list of the basic tools and parts necessary for starting your own robotics laboratory.

  • Power source (batteries): There are a few common types available. Regular alkaline batteries are not very cost-effective, so consider rechargeable NiCad, lithium, or NiMH batteries instead. WE also sell solar power kits and salt water fuel cell kits that offer alternative 'green' forms of energy consumption.
  • DC motors or servos: The batteries will power your motor, which in turn powers the movements of your robot. DC motors are more powerful, but servos are easier to control. Consider trying both!
  • Wheels: The most basic kind of movement for a robot is wheeled, so it's generally considered the best place to start. Your motor will turn the axles. 
  • Robot power regulation circuit: Pretty much what it sounds like: a circuit that keeps too much power from surging through your robot and frying its delicate bits. 
  • Microcontroller: The brain of your robot. It's a cool-looking circuit board with various plugs and LEDs that can be programmed to command the "body" of the robot. The easiest ones to use are the ones with a built-in programmer, so look for those. 
  • Sensors (photoresistors and sound  sensors): These let your robot sense the world around them. There are various types, most of them cheap. They plug into your micro-controller. 
  • Chassis parts: These could be anything from sheets of metal that you can work into shapes with a home shop, to scavenged pieces from the local thrift store or scrapheap.
  • Various hand tools and fasteners: Velcro, strong tape, glue, screws, bolts and nuts, wrenches, screwdrivers and a hammer...the more tools and parts you have the more designs you'll be able to build.

Robots From OWI Robot

Getting into basic robotics isn't rocket science. With a willingness to learn, and a kit with the right parts, anyone can enter the fascinating world of robot creation. Contact us at www.owirobot.com for robotic kits and parts today!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Giveaways

Every month we're giving away a free robotic kit to a lucky customer. Enter below as many times as you like, in as many ways as you like to gain points. The winner will be announced at the end of the month and contacted via email. Good luck!
July's Giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway Congrats to Lori W. on winning last months giveaway!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Best Robotic Kits for Beginners

We've found that the best outlet for individuals with a fledgling talent in mechanics and electronics are robotic kits for beginners. These beginner kits are a great way to learn some of the fundamental principles of robotics, while simultaneously nurturing creativity and skill. Some of our kits are also powered by salt water and solar energy, which serves to enhance a beginner's understanding of clean, renewable energy sources while providing an engaging and entertaining experience, using some of the best robotic kits available.

Entry Level Robot Kits

In our lengthy experience, the best robotic kits are easy to use, durable and made from non-toxic, safe parts that children are able to handle. To get a better idea of which beginning robotic kits to start with, we've created a list below:

6-in-1 Educational Solar Kits - This kit is easily among the best for beginners as well as being one of our most decorated and awarded products to date. The 6-in-1 teaches the basics of assembly and the reuse of parts while giving users the added advantage of requiring no external batteries. It's configuration allows multiple constructions and extended enjoyment at (what we believe) is a very affordable price. The 6-in-1 also teaches the basics of how an electronic motor functions and how the construction of a miniature powerboat or racecar mirrors the functioning of their larger counterparts.

Robotic Arm Edge - A robotic arm kit is also one of the cooler starter kits for an amateur builder. It allows the user to work on slightly more complex movement functions and honestly, just looks flat-out cool. The assembly process is incredibly fun, as is using the robotic arm to maneuver, lift and move objects. The arm is operated via wired remote control that allows the user to control the movement of the arm on multiple axes. There is also a USB interface that allows you to control the Robotic Arm Edge with your computer! We fill that the best robotic kits provide hours of inventive and fun-filled play. The Robotic Arm Edge has this in spades.

3-in-1 All-Terrain Robot - Intelligently designed for play as a toy or as an effective robotics project, the All-Terrain Robot can be assembled in three different variations; a gripper, a rover and an industrial forklift. The realistic tracks replace tires for superior traction and all-terrain movement and the gripper can be used to lift small objects. Typically powered by AA batteries, this all-terrain robot is great as a functional toy while teaching basic robot construction.



Get the Best Robotics from OWI Robot

OWI Robotics is a premier manufacturer of high quality robotics kits for beginners and advanced enthusiasts. The company offers battery-powered, solar-powered and salt water-powered kits a single, 3-in-1 or even 7-in-1 variants. From popular kits that create toys such as the 'Frightened Grasshopper' and all-aluminum dinosaur kits to robotic arm kits, OWI Robotics has the best robot kits for every level of play and learning.

Contact us for robotic kits for beginners, to enter a world of fun and learning.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Evan and Lauren Take on Our 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers

Evan and Lauren over at http://evan-and-lauren-a.blogspot.com/ were awesome enough to put together one of our newest kits for 2012, the 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers. Not only that, they blogged about their experience. Read their post below or check it out here.

My son loves vehicles, especially ones that move on their own. We were lucky enough to try out the new 7 in 1 Rechargeable Solar Transformers from OWI, Inc. This product is really cool and kids get to learn some science by learning about solar energy. Plus for parents how exciting is it to have a toy with no batteries or tools! All the pieces snap together.

Here is Evan showing me how to charge the car. Evan likes the car best but there are five vehicles that can be made: Solar Car, Concept Car, Bulldozer, Dump Truck, and Concept Racer.

The Bulldozer


The Dump Truck.


During the Charging Process.

This is how it starts and kids get to put the pieces together.

Here is the charging station. not there are two places to plug into for charging.

Here it is plugged in.

Here he is playing with it after charging. It goes really fast.

Here it is as packaged







Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Do It Yourself!

DIY Robotics

With DIY robotics, individuals set up new kinds of automated structures or robots that perform various tasks. Robotics has come a long way from the old, clunky models seen in retail magazines of the 1980s. Today's robots are quite diverse. Some of them have more of a focus on visual appeal, while others are built to perform specific functions. DIY robotics produces working products of all shapes and sizes, each with their own unique style and utility.

What Does DIY Robotics Involve?

Building robots from scratch involves a careful study of a desired result, along with science and know-how that takes the builder toward that goal or objective. DIY robotics projects need specific hardware to function, along with the right kinds of programming and design. Many 'napkin drawings' for DIY robotics involve figuring out what the robot is supposed to do and how it will physically or mechanically achieve these tasks. Then the DIY builder reaches toward resources that will deliver the tools and equipment to construct a working design. A DIY robotics engineer will often look at specific kinds of mobility, along with structures that help a robot to grasp objects, measure heights, or perform any other kinds of advanced functions. DIY robotics also often involves looking at power sources for a robot. While these used to be limited to a bulky battery pack or a power cord, new advances in solar technology, as well as salt water fuel cell and other sustainable methods, have helped DIY robotic designers to power up their products in ways that won't restrict their mobility or use up a lot of electricity from the grid. Planners can look to the most current types of power sources when planning their build and reduce weight, also conserving environmental resources.

DIY Robotics with OWI Robotics

A goal here at OWI Robotics is to help builders put together a DIY robotic product from start to finish. Our catalog provides full scale robotic kits as well as smaller alternatives that are as equally effective for nearly any DIY robotics design. We offer accessories, instructional materials and alternative energy sourcing for robotic projects to provide a kind of one-stop shop for designers who want to make their DIY robotics dreams come true. Get a full kit to put together a working robot, or find ways to power up existing designs with the newest technologies around. We're dedicated to helping hobbyists, professionals and others build the best robotic designs possible, with the newest materials and the most current engineering philosophies available to the market.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


What is Robotics?

When it comes to do-it-yourself hobbies and activities, there's not much that comes close to the world of robotics. Robotics is more than just a fascinating area of study, because the process of building your own robotic systems is immensely rewarding and educational. And, the feeling of accomplishment is second to none.

History of Robotics

So, what is robotics? Robotics is a branch of technology that deals with all the logistics of robots: designing, building, operating, manufacturing and then applying robotic and computer systems for different tasks. When one thinks of robots they might think of movies like Star Wars or Wall-E. Truth be told, robots play a huge role in pop culture and the thought of robots evokes a sense of wonder. Some people think the idea of robots entering our lives will only occur in the far-off future, when in fact, robotics have been around since ancient times. While not quite what one might imagine as a robot, Archytas, a Greek mathematician, suggested the creation of "The Pigeon," a steam-powered bird. In fact, he created several automated machines that made use of air pressure and water also. But the first signs of modern, useful robotics didn't show up until 1926, when Westinghouse released Televox. A man-sized robot, Televox was able to pick up a ringing telephone, in addition to several other features. Within just 28 years, the first practical modern robot was invented by George Devol. The robot, Unimate, would be sold to General Motors and served on the assembly line starting in 1961. Still, robots were expensive, and it seemed like average citizens wouldn't make use of robots until far off in the future. But, the future is now. Though they might not look like R2-D2 or C-3PO, robots are all around us. Ever microwave a TV dinner or leftovers? That rotating platter that spins your food could be considered a robotic application. If that seems too simple, how about the iRobot Roomba? It's a circular vacuum cleaner that'll patrol a room on its own and suck up and dirt. Almost every piece of technology we interact with on a daily basis has roots in robotics. And now that you know the answer to "What is robotics?", now's a great time to delve into the world of robotics.

Robotics from OWI Robots

It might seem intimidating to get into robotics as a hobby, but in truth it couldn't be any easier. Which is why here at OWI Robots we sell comprehensive robotic kits that include everything you need to start tinkering and building your own robots. You get all the tools and materials required, but after completing your own robot kit, we're pretty sure you will want some tools of your own. What's really amazing is how much you will learn when working on robot kits. This is why we believe robotics is such a great hobby for children. They can take the scientific lessons they learn in school and apply it to their kits. Solar energy and kinetic energy are just some lessons that kids can learn more about when they work on robot kits. It truly is rewarding for them as well. Robots aren't just involved in some far-off scientific field where brainy scientists tinker away at complicated machines. Robots are a part of our technology-fueled lives and now's the time to get involved. What is robotics? A whole lot of fun, that's what! If you're ready to get started, visit OWI Robotics at http://www.owirobot.com today.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Free Salt Water Monster Truck Giveaway at BlessedElements.com

To view the original article click here

Grace Hodgin over at blessedelements.com has some great things to say about our Salt Water Fuel Cell Monster Truck...

My oldest grandson will be 13 years old this year! The one thing I notice about each birthday is how much harder it is becoming to get him a present that is really cool and age appropriate. I don't always buy the video games that he likes because I prefer to get him something that will use the other parts of his brain. It is difficult to find a really neat toy that isn't super expensive too.

I like the things I buy to teach him something or let him explore an avenue in life he has not been ontroduced to so he can expand his knowledge. I know several of you are shaking your heads in agreement right now but what toy is out there that can do all that but still be affordable?

Owirobot is definitely going to be a site you want to go browse and shop. They have some really neat things that will intrigue anyone that likes to put things together and see them go.


The Salt Water Fuel Cell Monster Truck Kit has so much to offer. When we got our kit my first reaction was, "Wow, thats a lot of parts?"


I use to put model cars together when I was a kid so I was naturally drawn to it. What a great bonding experience between a kid and an adult that could help them in creating this truck.

My father and I put together a model V-8 engine once that really worked. I had a curiosity about how cars ran and fixing them so my dad used this to help me understand the basics. These kits have the same educational experience for any child that would like to learn how engines work. This one works as a flat or V-8 engine. The pistons move and you can see the parts moving as it travels on its salt water fuel.

That takes us to the next brilliant design feature of this truck. Green living. With our energy crisis being what it is today we really need to train our youths to think out of the box or 'out of the oil tank' if you get my drift and into green fuel option.

What a wonderful way to get into the spirit of alternative fuel options by letting them experience something they can make, add salt water to the fuel cell and watch it run. These are fascinating and they run for about 15 minutes on salt water drops. Extra magnesium strips come with the kit so you have lots of play time!

There is even a dropper included to use to drop your salt water on the fuel cell. It is a complete kit with lots of hours of fun included. I think this could easily be used as a science project as well! The manual is concise and informative. They even have trouble shooting Youtube videos if you have trouble getting yours to run. We weren't using enough salt in our water so we went to the video's and they solves our problems. 

Trucks aren't the only thing on sale at Owikit. Robots, tiny cars, bugs, you name it you can find something over there and have a great time while learning. I'm not the only one who thinks this is a great company. The Institute for Childhood Resources has selected Hyper Peppy robot kit as Dr. Toy's "Top Ten Creative Products" winner and "100 Best Children's Products" winner. Dr. Toy says,
"A sure fire winner for a new adventure for a parent and child to do together." Also, it has been selected by the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association as "Top Toys to Rival Computers".
Summer is coming and what is in your toy box that will nurture those kids' creativity? You can use their logo on my side bar to get to their site! I was just over on their facebook page and saw this:
"For a limited time get 10% off all of our new 2012 kits! Simply type "tenoff" in the coupon code box at checkout. www.owirobot.com/2012-new-kits/"
Why wait?

Don't you think Owirobot should be in your toy box this year? I do!


Owirobot is also offering the same kit for one of my readers so enter for your chance to win.




Thursday, April 19, 2012

Dr.Toy Selects OWI Hyper Peppy as Best Classic Toy for 2012

The Institute for Childhood Resources has selected the Hyper Peppy robot kit as Dr. Toy's "Top Ten Creative Products" winner and "100 Best Children's Products" winner. Dr. Toy says, "A sure fire winner for a new adventure for a parent and child to do together." Also, it has been selected by the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association as "Top 10 Toys to Rival Computers".

Hyper Peppy is a spunky little robot that your child can build. Explore the fundamentals of robotics with this informative and entertaining robot kit. Hyper Peppy is an intelligent robot with a touch/sound sensor. If it comes in contact with an object or hears a loud noise (such as hands clapping), Hyper Peppy automatically reverses, then turns left before embarking on a new course.

Hyper Peppy is lots of fun from the moment it arrives. Requiring only basic hand tools, the kit contains complete step-by-step instructions, pre-assembled printed circuit board, condenser microphone, and an easy-to-assemble mechanical drive system. It's an ideal gift for the hobbyist or budding scientist.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

New Trends in Robotics Technology

Robotics technology, like many fields of technology, is a rapidly evolving field with frequent innovations. Because there are so many ways that robotics can be used, from imitating humans, to toys, to streamlining factories. Trends vary from year to year and rapidly develop. Here are some of the most current trends in our field:

Future of Robotics Technology

OWI, like the best robotics companies, now incorporate sustainability into our newer models. As opposed to disposable batteries or wall chargers, many newer models of robots are powered by solar power or by fuel cells, both of which can run indefinitely and use renewable resources. Because robotics tend to be on a smaller scale than mots machines, it is possible to use technologies which are not yet in wide use for full-scale machinery. For children, the presence of such features in their toys provides a fun lesson in environmentalism, incorporating sustainability into their everyday life and play.

Solar powered robots are able to run wherever there is sunlight, and some store this excess energy collected for later use.

Our fuel cell robot can run on salt water alone, utilizing electrochemical fuel cell technology which is not yet generally used in cars or factories. A fuel cell is an electrochemical cell that converts energy from a fuel into electrical energy. Fuel cells can operate continuously as long as the necessary reactant and oxidant flows are maintained. In this cell, magnesium is the anode, the porous carbon sheet (air) is the cathode, and saltwater is the electrolyte. This is known as an air-depolarizing type of battery. During chemical reactions, alkaline earth metals (magnesium) lose two electrons. Elementary halogens such as chlorine, which can be found in ordinary table salt (NaCl), are also relatively reactive. Unlike the alkaline earth metals, the halogens tend to gain electrons. These are known as oxidizing agents because they remove electrons from other elements. 

The saltwater slowly dissolves the magnesium sheet to produce hydrogen ions that migrate to the carbon cathode, thus creating an electrical current. The carbon surface would almost immediately become blocked, or polarized, by the hydrogen except that the carbon is porous. Air diffuses down through the carbon and yields oxygen that combines with the hydrogen to form water, permitting the electrical effect to continue. 


Sensor

Many people have heard about robots with sensory technology thanks to the popularity of vacuum cleaners which sense themselves around the room, or about prototypes of driverless cars. This same robotics technology is eliminating the necessity of clunky, imprecise remote controls for robotics. many robots and robotic vehicles now come with sensory technology enabling them to navigate corners, walls, and furniture. Others may change course when prompted by the presence of a loud sound.


Robotics from OWI Robot

Toy robots are now often convertible, meaning they are made to be transformed between several different forms with small, simple actions on the part of the owner. This means that one robot can be many toys in one, for example, being able to change from car to boat to windmill. many robots are now able to perform many actions or take many forms, because so much more information can be programmed into them than was possible in the past. 

For the best quality in innovative robotics technologies like this, contact owirobot.com