Spotlight On Tinyminds

Etsy places a spotlight on tinyminds, creator of the much-hyped solar robots. [Jenny], the brains behind tinyminds and self-described “all round nerd and non-stop crafter”, claims to draw inspiration for her BEAM solar bug and monster robots from things as varied as paper and wood. She describes the process of creating her robots and working with solar energy as “magical”. The fact that they’re solar-powered is a huge advantage – these “pets” never die and never need recharging, only light. Her Cthulhu robot was linked to by BoingBoing Gadgets, and is unfortunately sold out at the moment. tinyminds has plenty of other inventive, equally inspiring robots available for purchase.

6 thoughts on “Spotlight On Tinyminds

  1. “and is unfortunately sold out at the moment. tinyminds has plenty of other inventive, equally inspiring robots available for purchase.”

    awesome! Because I come to this site to buy stuff and I was worried you were going to try to teach me how to build my own.

  2. Whoa, do people really buy these for _$80_!? They are cool, but I’d think that the people most likely to want one are also the ones most likely to want to make them themselves. If these are really hot sellers, I need to get into a new line of work!

  3. Let me attempt to remedy the situation.

    This is a starting point for BEAM bots. BEAM bots basically starts from 3 philosophical tenets:

    * Use minimalist electronics
    This keeps complexity from “snowballing”, and keeps costs down
    * Recycle & reuse components out of technoscrap
    This keeps things cheap, and avoids a lot of trips to parts stores; virtually all the parts required to make a BEAM robot can be found in broken electronics (ovens, walkman’s, CD players, VCRs, pagers…).
    * Solar power your critter if possible
    While less powerful than even a small battery (and, up-front, more expensive), solar cell s last for years; solar-powered BEAMbots don’t require constant battery replacements or down-time for battery recharging.

    They have a circuit library, thorough explanations for even the most novice of hobbyists, and plenty of links to inspiration.

    The site is geared well to accept traffic from HAD. It’s all text, and there are even competitions every year all over the world.

    Backtrack to for information on techniques, history, coming events, books, beginner how-to, articles, and generally everything that you can’t glean the linked bestiary.

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