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Puzzlebox Orbit is an educational toy that combines a brain-controlled helicopter with open hardware, software, and teaching material
Puzzlebox Orbit is an educational toy that combines a brain-controlled helicopter with open hardware, software, and teaching material
Puzzlebox Orbit is an educational toy that combines a brain-controlled helicopter with open hardware, software, and teaching material
434 backers pledged $74,799 to help bring this project to life.

Puzzlebox Newsletter, Instruction Video, Pyramid Update, and Orbit Packaging

Kickstarter Update

Hello again! It has been some time since our last Kickstarter update, and we apologize for that. We do our best to respond to direct inquiries but as we are yet a small team can easily get bogged down in the day-to-day needs of running a growing company. We have taken a series of steps to address this, starting with the Puzzlebox Newsletter.

Puzzlebox Newsletter

We are pleased to introduce our newsletter, to keep all of our supporters informed about updates on their purchases from Puzzlebox. You should be receiving the first message immediately following this one, with much of the same information. While the Kickstarter platform has served us well for announcements so far, we wanted to make sure that future updates include our entire community (including new customers who arrived after the Kickstarter closed). When Puzzlebox Pyramids have shipped to all backers we will officially change over to the newsletter for ongoing communications. If you do not wish to receive these emails from Puzzlebox please excuse our intrusion and you can find an "Unsubscribe" link at the bottom of each message.

Orbit Instruction Video

We have received several requests to produce a video demonstrating how to setup and operate the Puzzlebox Orbit. This video includes examples for pairing with the NeuroSky MindWave Mobile over Bluetooth, proper fit of the headset, using the control software, adjusting the "flight plan" to set hover height and direction of flight, and tips and tricks for troubleshooting. Download instructions for Android and Apple iOS are still documented on the wiki.

Puzzlebox Pyramid Update

Hao has been hard at work developing custom circuit boards for the Puzzlebox Pyramid. In the course of production we have decided to add two key new components to our design:

  • Bluetooth
  • Second, dedicated Atmel micro-controller for manipulation of RGB LEDs, leaving main controller available for future peripherals

The decision to build Bluetooth into the Pyramid was made following internal discussions around new capabilities its inclusion would enable which were just too good to pass up. For starters, until now it was required we supply the original NeuroSky MindWave EEG headset with the Pyramid instead of the Bluetooth-based MindWave Mobile which is included with the Puzzlebox Orbit. The original MindWave relied on a USB adapter, communicating using radio signals (RF). Adding Bluetooth provides a clean upgrade path from the Orbit Mobile Edition to the Pyramid.

We also wanted to ensure potential for expansion with hardware accessories. For technical reasons, the second Atmel micro-controller will grant full use of the RGB color spectrum in all 12 LEDs of our display without incurring certain compromises. We are effectively adding a second Arduino into each Pyramid.

And of course we will be absorbing all additional cost for our Kickstarter backers and direct pre-order customers.

New Orbit Packaging

Earlier this month Puzzlebox completed its new package design for the Orbit. Many thanks to Zavier at NeuroSky for his fine work helping translate our ideas and sketches into a workable layout and to Hao for his tireless research into printers and material options. We felt proud to hold the final product in our hands and thank each of you once again for helping to make it happen!

Recent Events

GDC (Game Developers Conference) 2013:

Stanford Robot Block Party:

  • Testing the Puzzlebox Orbit Brain-Controlled Helicopter
  • PC World: Mind-controlled helicopter takes some serious brain power
  • CNET: Brain-controlled helicopter

Upcoming Events

Puzzlebox will be presenting the Puzzlebox Orbit and pre-release versions of the Puzzlebox Pyramid at the following events in May:

If you are located in the Bay Area we hope to see you there!


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    1. Mike van Hoenselaar on February 21, 2015

      I have yet to receive my rewards package. I pledged $299. Thats not pocket change.
      Please be so gentile to reply to my messages via Kickstarter for over a year :(.
      Love to hear from you guys.

    2. Chris York on May 3, 2013

      Same question here. what is the status on shipping the items?

    3. Missing avatar

      Robb Olson on April 29, 2013

      I have yet to recieve my rewards package. It was supposed to ship Jan or Feb 2013, I thought, Just wondering if I was forgotten. Thanks....Robb Olson