We first came across Tangeez—colorful, interactive, light-up building blocks—at this year's Maker Faire. A long-anticipated reinvention of the classic toy, these mesmerizing, palm-sized objects change color as they're stacked. Dubbed "physical pixels" by co-creators Emily Webster and Mustafa Bagdatli—two NYU Interactive Telecommunications Program Alumni—the internally illuminated lights are as entertaining for kids as they are for adults. Tangeez pack oodles of fun and myriad functions into a small portable structure, and now they're available for pre-order from Kickstarter.
Webster and Bagdatli consider Tangeez "like Legos and Light Bright mashed up into one tactile building module." Each circular stacking block can morph between seven different colors based on combinations with the three holes on the bottom and three prongs on top. When prongs and holes are combined during the stacking, red, green or blue LED lights activate and change inside.
Tangeez has already been selected as a finalist for New York’s Next Top Makers competition, created by Mayor Bloomberg and the NYCEDC (New York Economic Development Council) and sponsored by companies like IDEO and Quirky. Statistics abound in support of the benefits from building blocks and construction sets regarding cognitive development and advancing motor skills in children—Tangeez are interactive learning utensils as well as toys. Now, after two years of prototyping, they're now ready for production. A $45 Kickstarter donation ensures a pre-order of the Tangeez Mini Stack.
Images courtesy of Tangeez