After many, (many!) months of design and development, we are proud to announce the new and improved v0.3 littleBits library! At littleBits we believe in open innovation, this means not only open sourcing our products, but also opening up our development process. We are iterating through the design, the mechanics and the aesthetics of the Bits and releasing them every step of the way. Over the past months, we listened to your comments, feedback and concerns on v0.2 and folded them into the new version. We are very proud of the result, and we hope you like it too!
So, What’s new!?!
New and improved connectors
We’ve tweaked and iterated on our design to develop a stronger and more robust connection between Bits. Now the connectors have more surface area and the Bits hold tighter to each other while still allowing easy connection for creating, prototyping, and experimenting. For our v0.2 users, don’t worry: the new connectors are backwards compatible! The new v0.3 are compatible with your v0.2 Bits too! More on that here
littleLegs and Double-sided boards
littleBits v0.3′s new connector features little legs that lift the Bits up off the surface you have them on. This means littleBits works even better on uneven surfaces
With the addition of our connector legs, we now also have the ability to place components on both sides of the printed circuit board. This allows us to make some of the littleBits modules even smaller! Smaller circuit assemblies mean the Bits can fit into smaller projects more easily.
Interaction is the center of attention
We’ve evaluated each Bit (with the help of our enthusiastic users) and improved the look and feel by presenting only the most compelling parts of the circuits. The goal of littleBits is to make every interaction in the world into a ready to use brick. Now interfacing elements (such as knobs, buttons, sensors) are front and center, while other control circuitry is on the bottom layer. Now you can cut to the chase and start having fun faster and integrate the interaction into your projects more readily.
We never rest with our designs so we made improvements to how many of the Bits function. For instance, you told us the coin battery died too fast, so we made it bigger and added capacity.
Some parts of the mechanical designs were far from ideal and have now been improved. Most significantly, tethered components (such as the vibration motor, and the long LED) are now held down to the circuit boards with mating connectors so the Bits are more robust under rigorous use. For enterprising Bitsters, this adds potential to hack and modify your Bits. We’ve also made the switch on the power bit bigger and more obvious, and replaced the button with a bigger one that is easier to access. The DC motor has been upgraded to a geared motor with increased torque, and now features a motor cover for increased mechanical stability
Cleaner layout, larger text
We believe electronics are beautiful. We have now put a little more rigor into our layouts, cleaned out the design and made the text larger so it easier to read.
Get started quick
Not everyone knows how to use each Bit, and that is the point! We now ship individual Bits and Kits with instruction sheets on how to put them together and start making circuits and projects in seconds
What can you make with littleBits? The short answer is a whole lotta stuff! We now have sample projects on the back of the instruction sheets in the Kits, and are adding new projects and tutorial videos every day to the project gallery. Now it’s your turn, make something that does something!