Child’s Play Produces Free 3D-Printed Universal Construction Kit for Legos, K’Nex and More

By: | May 18th, 2014

Free Universal Construction Kit

Free Universal Construction Kit (Image Courtesy www.ffff.at)

Free Universal Construction Kit Makes Lego Inter-Operable, Geeks Happy

Patented in 1958, it is widely believed that Lego is on its last legs. Predictions are that 3D printers will make Lego obsolete. And Lego is just one of many toy construction sets that provide an outlet for young and old alike.

The company has been moving to consolidate its brand and products and to remain relevant. Lego projects like Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, and other high profile mega projects like it, will always coax money out of a parent’s pocket if it has a chance of getting a child interested in engineering, architecture and design.

Expanding Ecosystem of Construction Toys

In a nod to “open source” culture, Free Art & Technology Lab or F.A.T. Lab and Sy-Lab have created the Free Universal Construction Kit (acronym omitted) eliminating the proprietary roadblock that has existed between the various commercial platforms. According to the F.A.T. Lab, “it is dedicated to enriching the public domain through the research and development of creative technologies and media.”

Fully Compatible & Inter-Operable

The Free Universal Construction Kit provides a matrix of nearly 80 adaptable bricks, making the following children’s construction toys inter-operable:

  • Lego
  • Duplo
  • Fischertechnik
  • Gears! Gears! Gears!
  • K’Nex
  • Krinkles (Bristle Blocks)
  • Lincoln Logs
  • Tinkertoys
  • Zome
  • Zoob

Each of the above systems has its own strengths and weaknesses. For example, some systems provide mechanical strength so that building can take place on a large scale. Other systems allow the design of kinetic movement. Still, other systems offer the ability to create more complex geometries and symmetries. Now a kid doesn’t have to choose between systems but can combine them all.

For the end-user, usually a child, the new Free Universal Construction Kit greatly multiplies the number of potential structures that can be created, thereby increasing knowledge and improving experience. Its creators call it “radically hybrid constructive play.”

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David Russell Schilling

David enjoys research and writing about cutting edge technologies that hold the promise of improving conditions for all life on planet earth.

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