Frequently Asked Questions
Functionality. There vast majority of building blocks stack one on top of another. Although you can build in the second and third dimensions by stacking traditional blocks a brick-pattern, you are really only working in one dimension. Bit-Blocks, on the other hand, are truly three dimensional thanks to their unique six-sided design. As a result:
1) Structures are much easier to take apart and modify.
2) There is more focus on what you are trying to build and less on how to build it. Since the blocks are truly three-dimensional, you don’t have to think about how to work around the limitations of your medium. This freedom allows you mind to focus on your goal, which makes building much more interesting.
3) Bit-Blocks have levels of difficulty. There are some things you can build by just letting your mind relax and placing blocks wherever you feel like. Other creations, however, require constant focus and detailed planning. I have seen children barely old enough to walk have fun playing with Bit-Blocks. At the same time, however, I am 27, have spent a LOT of time building with Bit-Blocks, and I still feel like I have to stretch my brain every time I make something new.
4) Building feels less like construction and more like painting a 3-dimensional jigsaw puzzle with self-replicating crystals.
Bit-Blocks also feel different in a more literal sense. If you look closely, you will notice that there are no sharp edges. This was a deliberate design choice to make them as easy on the hand as possible. I also added semi-circular indentations on the edges of each block to make them easier to pull apart. Furthermore, the combination of rounded squares, six-sided shape, material that is hard but with a bit of give, and slightly textured finish gives them an almost stress-ball-like quality. I like to take a Bit-Block with me when I go to class and roll it through my hand when the lecture or class discussion runs long—it helps me stay focused.Last updated:
Bit-Blocks are primarily intended for the 4-12 year-old range, but I have found during play-testing that the intricacy of Bit-Blocks’ appearance and the complexity of building in three dimensions makes them appeal to adults as well. So when your kids are having fun, practicing their motor and spatial skills, and exercising their creativity, it will be easy for you to enjoy yourself when they ask you to play along.Last updated:
Why the extra cost for international backers and why is there such a jump between the basic and advanced tiers?
I would love to offer lower prices to everyone, including international backers. Unfortunately, financial viability imposes constraints. The reason for the sharp increase is that USPS (which appears to have the lowest costs across the board) offers first class postage for packages 4 pounds and under (cost is roughly $16 more than shipping within the US), and after that priority flat rate is the best rate I can get, which is roughly +$50. While USPS charges slightly different rates for different parts of the world Canada, Europe, Asia, etc., Kickstarter only provides the options: sell all over the world or not; charge an extra fee for international shipping or not--so I have to split the difference on the additional rate I charge (I am using Australia as a baseline)
Perhaps, if the product takes off, I will in the distant future be able to secure warehouse space in different countries and take advantage of bulk discounts. For now, I would suggest to price-conscious international backers to go for the Basic or Epic sets, which have the lowest international shipping percentage increase (roughly 24% and 21%, respectively).Last updated:
Every unique design I make will require its own mold, increasing my startup costs. For that reason, I am limiting myself at this time to the Minimum Viable Product--which I believe is the basic 1-inch Bit-Block, with finishing blocks as a stretch goal.
But yes, I have lots of ideas for expansions in mind. As just a few examples:
- Finishing blocks you can draw on,
- Running electricity through the blocks so you can run a motor through them
- Blocks that light up
- Blocks that connect on two sides, and are sloped on a third, so you can build on diagonals.
- Using different materials (biodegradable plastics, wood, metal, chocolate, concrete (or industrial hemp if that becomes legal), and so on)
- Finishing blocks that fit together into a three-dimensional puzzle
- Bit-Blocks that are double or triple wide, different colors (orange, black, stone-colored, etc)
- Blocks that are much bigger or smaller than the standard, but can integrate to standard sized blocks with Conversion Blocks
Once again, though, I have limited resources at this time and have to start somewhere. By being an early adopter and backing my Kickstarter, you will be among the first to see the next stages in the Bit-Block's evolution. With hard work, your support, and maybe a little luck, the best is yet to come.Last updated:
When you make a pledge on this or any other Kickstarter project, your credit card is not actually charged unless and until the deadline passes AND the project is successful. If the project is not successful, no charge ever occurs. The upshot is that you incur almost no risk in backing a Kickstarter project. If I reach the goal, then I will have enough startup capital to deliver on the rewards and you get a great product at a low, early-adopter price. If I don't reach the goal, you pay nothing. In other words, you can win, or you can draw, but you can't lose.Last updated:
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