Monday, April 25, 2011

Smart Prototyping for Smart Toys - Tessellation | Product Design and Development

Smart Prototyping for Smart Toys | Product Design and Development:
"Most of us have seen two-dimensional tessellation in the work of M.C. Escher, examples of which can be found at (For a hands-on exercise in two-dimensional tessellation go to, use your pointer to alter the starting shape, and click tessellate to see the result.)

For Stapleton, that art class project became a bit of an obsession. “The assignment wasn’t very tightly defined,” he says, “but we were working in wood, so it seemed natural to start working in three dimensions.” "


Today, that design, now dubbed Reptangles, has been licensed to Fat Brain Toys, a manufacturer and distributor of educational and specialty playthings. Reptangles are produced in injection molded plastic and packaged in sets.
Each plastic block has 56 patent pending connectors allowing any two blocks to be attached to one another in literally hundreds of ways (see Figure 2, [at top]). A set of 24 blocks can be used to create a dizzying variety of designs.

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