Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Nerf N-Strike Tech Target | Best Answer Ever to “What CAN I Shoot At, Dad?”
















Despite a strict "no toy guns" rule in our house, I've managed to convince my wife that Nerf products don't count (other dads who'd like to learn how, eMail me for a strategy session). With their beautifully rendered techno designs and remarkably intricate mechanics – the latest holds 144 darts on a rotating rack before launching them 75ft – I'll always have a designer's appreciation for what the Hasbro team accomplishes for less than $30. But until recently, there's been nothing but friends (watch those eyes!), pets and fragile household objects to shoot at. Enter the N-Strike Tech Target… a battery operated "dart board" that senses where each round hits and automatically keeps score in a variety of skill-testing games. With catchy voice prompts, energetic music and sound effects keyed to the action, this literally keeps me my kids occupied for hours on end. A wonderful alternative to video games: non-violent, and a level of physical interaction the most advanced onscreen target practice can't match for fun. About $19.99 http://www.hasbro.com

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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Hexbug Nano | Ant Farm 2.0

After playing with these addictive electronic insects for a few days, I'd say Innovation First is really onto something special. I've posted a video, as they truly defy adequate description in words or pictures – you have to experience their frantic motion, seemingly intelligent interaction and eerily lifelike behavior in action to appreciate the concept. But as I have to write something, here's my best effort at describing Hexbug Nanos: imagine the Ant Farm you had as a kid (before you knocked it off the shelf) morphed into a Hot Wheels racetrack… amazing fun. Individual bugs about $10, expandable "Habitats" (which include one or two bugs) $15 – $50.  http://www.hexbug.com/nano

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