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Twoddler Prototype Teaches Your Toddler to Tweet

Posted on December 7, 2009
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Twoddler

A prototype gadget introduced by Belgium’s Hasselt University, as part of its course on mobile and pervasive computing, has been garnering some buzz among the tech blogs.  Twoddler is a Fisher Price Activity Center hacked with an Arduino mother board and enhanced with photos of family members and friends.  Every activity done onto the toy-whether pressing buttons or moving dials-is translated into a Twitter message and posted on the child’s personal account.  Messages are also sent to other Twoddlers, generating effects like blinking colored lights.

In concept, the Twoddler allows children who are not capable of verbal communication to convey their thoughts and emotions through a combination of hardware and software.  However, some tech blogs began overreacting about it, with Engadget saying that having messages on the parents’ Twitter feed just because another child bashes the Twoddler would be mistaken as messages from their own child.  Wired.com, meanwhile, writes that Twoddler could "add the random, idiotic bleatings of a baby to the stream of nonsense."

Despite the criticisms, Twoddler received nothing but nods from the Innovative and Creative Applications Awards 2009, winning the coveted INCA Award.

What’s your take on the Twoddler?  Will you buy your toddlers and encourage them to tweet once it becomes available in the market?

Image source:  Research.edm.UHasselt.be

 
 

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