Hello Friends! Thanks for visiting the Tweenbots Kickstarter page. With your help, I hope to produce a Tweenbots Kit that makes it easy for you to build an adorable cardboard robot of your own.
The Tweenbots Kit was created in response to the overwhelming amount of requests I’ve received from people all over the world who saw the original Tweenbots and asked me how they could make their own cardboard robot. Over the past few months, I have been working on a fully functional prototype of the Kit that is easy and fun to build, and now I am seeking your support to help make the Kit a reality on a larger scale.
So, what is a Tweenbot?
A while ago, I had an idea to create a human-dependent cardboard robot that would navigate New York City with the help of strangers. I made a simple little robot named Sam and called him a Tweenbot because his goal was to go “in-between” places. He moved in a straight line at a constant speed, and had a flag that said the he was trying to get to a certain location and asked for people to aim him in the right direction to get there.
I set my first Tweenbot out on the corner near Washington Square Park, walked away, and watched what happened.
It was pretty incredible.
Dozens of people helped Sam traverse the park that day. Every time Sam got caught under a bench, or was trapped in a hole, some person would rescue him and send him on his way. Throughout numerous missions, the Tweenbots were always successful in reaching their destination, and they had many interesting encounters with people along the way. Groups of strangers would form around the Tweenbots wherever they went, collaborating to help out. People even ignored instructions to aim the Tweenbots in the right direction, if that meant sending them towards dangerous situations. One man turned Sam back in the direction from which he had just come, saying out loud to him, "You can’t go that way, it’s toward the road.”
I posted a video of Sam’s on the internet and watched in amazement as it caught on. I was humbled and delighted that there was such a great response. Since then, I’ve received hundreds of emails from people asking me how they could create a Tweenbot of their own and send it on missions around the globe.
That’s what this Kickstarter campaign is all about. With your help, we can make a Tweenbots Kit that lets everyone share the fun of creating, customizing, and deciding what the Tweenbots will do next!
To see the original Tweenbots website visit: www.Tweenbots.com
The build-your-own Tweenbot Kit came after much thought into how I could make the Tweenbots available to everyone. Building a Tweenbot is fun in itself, and it’s a blast to take something that you love out into the world and have it interact with other people. The Tweenbots Kit has everything you’ll need to do this. It’s simple enough that even kids can assemble it with the help of an adult.
The Kit consists of the following:
- Pre-cut cardboard pieces that can be folded to create the Tweenbot’s body
- A plastic base which includes a mount for batteries
- Motors, wheels, a switch, and screws (don’t worry, the batteries and motors will already be hooked together)
- Precut stickers for making the Tweenbot’s face (and extra material to make your own)
- A flag
All you'll need after that are batteries, a screwdriver, and glue (I recommend Elmer’s).
The Tweenbots are as much about the interactions they have and the journey they make as they are about the ‘bots themselves. So, the Tweenbots Kit also includes access to a website that makes it easy for you to create mission flags for your Tweenbot and post photos and video about their journeys and encounters. The goal is to make it easy for you to set up missions and aggregate info that helps you tell your own Tweenbots story as simply as possible.
Let's make it happen!
The Tweenbots are a labor of love, and they have already traveled far with the help of others, but they need your help to continue their journey! Your support will make it possible to use a process called injection molding to manufacture the plastic base for the Tweenbot. This process costs quite a bit to set up initially, but will enable the kit to cost much less than it would using another method. Also included in the funding goal is raising enough up-front money to buy the components in bulk, as well as produce and maintain the Tweenbots Kit website.
Thanks for checking out the project, and for helping send the Tweenbots toward their goal!
The song in the video is "Rabbit Pushing Mower" by Toy.
Photos of Korea, Egypt, Brazil are by: M-Louis, Alkan De Beaumont Chaglar, and Mike Vondran
Still can't get enough? Here are the Tweenbots at PopTech