Sony and Lego team up to add life to Lego bricks
Concerned that youngsters are showing a preference for video games at the expense of traditional toys, Lego has reportedly teamed up with the enemy, partnering with Sony to develop prototype Lego bricks embedded with electronics that they’ve dubbed “Toy Alive.”
Revealed at an open house marking the 25th anniversary of the Sony Computer Science Laboratories in Tokyo, the next-gen Lego bricks are embedded with various electronics that gives them different capabilities that are designed to make them more interactive.
Some are motorized and can be remotely controlled via a PlayStation controller while a computer-controlled Lego vehicle gives chase, others include actuators that allow Lego creations to be destroyed via remote, while others contain built-in cameras that allow a real-time, Lego-eye view to be transmitted to a tablet or smartphone.
Squeezing the electronics into the tiny bricks means that battery life is an issue, as is accurate tracking of the various electronic-embedded components. So it is unlikely the prototype Lego bricks will see a commercial release anytime soon, if at all.
Other technologies on show included a small quadrocopter that is controlled by the physical head movements of a person wearing a head-mounted display. Vision captured by a camera on the quadrocopter is transmitted to the head-mounted display, providing the user with a real-time, quadrocopter-eye view.
The Japan Times shot this video, which shows the Toy Alive Lego, quadrocopter, and other technologies under development.