Skip to main content

More NXT books coming...

Sorry, no details, but I can tell you that more NXT-related books are coming. For many of us who write these books, however, there are always pluses and minuses.

I was reading through some reviews of the last book, One Kit Wonders, and the latest review caught my attention... and made me realize that when it comes to NXT books, you just can't win :)

Feedback on Idea Book (both in reviews and from emails and blog comments) was supportive, but there seemed to be a larger group of readers who felt that the book was heavy on theory and needed more robots - "less talk, more building" seemed to be the consensus.

So... One Kit Wonders got rid of the theory and focused on just robots and the programs to run them. The latest review was 4-stars and stated "This book shows you how to build and program 10 robots . . . that is pretty much it" - - - 10 robot BIs and PIs and "that is pretty much it."

All these comments beg the question: What does the NXT robot owner want in a book?

Any my response: Whatever it is, it cannot be satisfied with one book. (And according to Malcolm Gladwell in his book "Blink," the consumer really does NOT know what he/she wants most of the time anyway.)

Readers want color -well, color will either raise the price of the book (fewer sales and less incentive by publisher to do more) or reduce the page count (fewer robots, fewer sales, and less incentive by publisher to do more).

Readers want more robots - BIs take up a large portion of pages, reducing the number of pages for text/discussion/training.

Readers want more discussion/training - Screenshots of NXT-G software take up a large portion of pages, reducing the number of pages for robot BIs.

I enjoy writing books on NXT and I think many of the other blog contribs feel the same way... but it's very difficult to gauge what our readers want because NXT users are such a large and diverse group in both skills and interests.

True story: I had someone (an adult) come up to me about 6 months ago at a robotics gathering in Atlanta - this person told me "I didn't like Mayan Adventure because it was too short. You need to write the next one and have maybe 10 or more robots."

I bit my tongue because what I wanted to say was "Mayan took about 6 months to write, went through numerous tech reviews for accuracy, and 10 robots would have taken over a year to get done. Oh, and it was written for kids. You write the next one."

Okay, enough griping... my goal with this post was to share with our readers that more books are in the works, but also to inform that we can't make everyone happy. We'll do our best, though... and hopefully you'll like what we come up with...

Popular posts from this blog

Celebrating MINDSTORMS with a Remix - Part 2

The ROBOTMAK3RS continued their celebration of the 25th Anniversary of MINDSTORMS through these summer and fall remix projects. Each ROBOTMAK3R was tasked with selecting one LEGO set of their choice and combining it with a MINDSTORMS set. Below are the five amazing models they came up with. Remote controlled material handle r by Jozua van Ravenhorst (aka Mr Jo) This remix combines the LEGO Technic Material Handler (42144) with MINDSTORMS EV3 (31313) It uses the power of pneumatic cylinders to move objects around. By using a bluetooth remote control, very precise movements can be made with this model. Touch sensors in the base chassis prevent the turret twisting the cables that go through the turntable to much. The program has several protections to prevent over pressurizing the system for each of the 3 individual pumps and valves that control the 2 booms and claws. The real version of this machine is mostly used in waste material sites to bring the material to machines that sort and


2023 is the 25th Anniversary of the MINDSTORMS brand. For 25 years, MINDSTORMS has educated and inspired a generation of robot builders, both children and adults. Unfortunately, the LEGO Group decided to end the line on December 2022. Many ROBOTMAK3RS have been passionately involved with the development of MINDSTORMS through the MUP and MCP programs. Even with the newest Robot Inventor line, several ROBOTMAK3RS were invited to submit additional bonus models that were included in the official app. Regardless of the retirement of a major LEGO robotics product line, ROBOTMAK3RS continue to MAKE-SHARE-INSPIRE using all LEGO robotics platforms available to us. Here is the official statement from LEGO. Since its launch in September 1998, LEGO MINDSTORMS has been one of the core ‘Build & Code’ experiences in the company’s portfolio, carrying with it significant brand equity and becoming a stand-out experience for the early days of consumer robotics and leading to current Build & Code

Celebrating 25 Years of MINDSTORMS

In celebration of the 25th Anniversary of MINDSTORMS, we take a trip through history. Please also visit ROBOTMAK3RS Community every week as we highlight different projects all through 2023 in celebration of the anniversary. Some of the early history is based on the content shared by  Coder Shah  in our  MINDSTORMS EV3 Community Group . Some of the text and links may have been edited from his original posts for consistency and clarity.  1984 - Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen watched a TV program called "Talking Turtle," where MIT professor Seymour Papert demonstrated how children could control robot "turtles" using LOGO, a programming language he developed. 1988 - The collaboration between MIT and LEGO resulted in LEGO TC Logo in 1988, which allowed students to control LEGO models using computer commands. The video shows Papert demonstrating TC Logo. 1990 - LEGO TC Logo was hampered since the robots you built had to be tethered to a personal computer. LEGO and MIT