Lego’s new Boost line was designed to be less complex than its Mindstorms line:
My favorite was Vernie, a bowtie-clad robot with amazing moving eyebrows. There’s also a cat, a space rover, a factory and a guitar.
While most of the pieces resemble the billions out there in the wild, Lego Boost kits come with a special Move Hub. Inside is a computer, a wireless chip and a tilt sensor. Attach that, along with included motors and a special sensor that detects color and distance, and the creations come to life.
Actually, there’s one additional step: coding. Lego Boost connects to an Android or iOS tablet app—at launch, no phones, however. The app demonstrates how to assemble simple lines of instruction. No typing required. Like real-world Lego bricks, these digital blocks of code stack up to make your Lego creation respond to stimuli or perform a routine. In a few minutes, I was able to make Vernie do a little dance, and the cat meow when I gave it a milk bottle made from bricks.