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tin can robot 360x379 The Bots of Maker Shed

Tin Can Robot, $16

Like the SpinBot, this isn’t really a robot (it does no sensing); it’s a mechanical kit that turns a lowly soda can into a lumbering little robot-looking character. This is a fun gift for a young one (8 or up) who’s fascinated by robots but not ready to dive into actual bot-building and programming.

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelancer writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture, including the first book about the web (Mosaic Quick Tour) and the Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Building Robots. He is currently working on a best-of collection of his writing, called Borg Like Me.


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