Digital Crave

LittleBits is the coolest holiday gift you’ve never heard of

The folks at LittleBits — makers of the wildly creative and easy to use electronic imagination gifts — have announced their Holiday Kit. The company asks this question: "What are you making for the holidays?"

LittleBits may be the answer. If you're looking for a product that truly rewards imagination, this innovative creation kit is a fine choice.

LittleBits are electronic building blocks — each with a simple function such as light, power or sound — that snap together with small magnets to enable anyone to create interactive projects in seconds, from blenders to bubble-making machines to pressure-controlled helicopters. Using LittleBits requires no background in science or engineering.

I can attest to that. I received my LittleBits test kit and was immediately impressed by the fit, finish and craft of the packaging and the product. As I read over the instructions and checked to see that all the parts were there, my 4-year-old daughter strung together a series of bells and lights that she controlled with a slider switch. In minutes she was able to take these quirky little electronic building blocks and put together working gadgets. We were both amused and amazed.

The company hopes LittleBits will catch on with kids and adults as well. They invite all inventors to submit sketches of their dream holiday projects. LittleBits will post the sketches on http://littlebits.cc

The three most imaginative sketches will be chosen and the company will send the winners all the Bits they need to make them a reality.

LittleBits founder Ayah Bdeir aims to counter the holiday consumer culture by putting creative tools, not products, in the gift box.

"Often, marketing departments in large companies decide on the hot new holiday gadgets, and we engage in prescribed interactions that they design," Bdeir said.

"LittleBits turns this trend on its head. The product is no longer the goal — LittleBits is a platform that enables people to bring their creativity to life."

LittleBits was showered with honors in 2012, including Dr. Toy's 10 Best Educational Products and 100 Best Children's Products for 2012; the Best Toys Guide's Holiday Hot Toys List, Best Toys for 2012 and Best Tech Toys for 2012; the National Parenting Publications Awards.

The 2012 Holiday Kit is now available for pre-order at http://shop.littlebits.com — in addition to the latest version (V0.3) of the company's flagship Starter Kit and the larger Extended Kit.

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