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Let's say you've always wanted to be a mad scientist and build your own secret robot army. Or maybe you just want to get your tinkering know-how down so you can create your own smartphone app and make millions of dollars to then finance your robot army. Whatever the case (or robot army) may be, you're going to need to learn Arduino, and the Complete Arduino Starter Kit And Course Bundle will teach it to you.
Arduino is an open-source electronics platform you can use to do anything, whether it's programming small robots or creating a Cracked reader dating app for your iPhone. In this bundle, you'll get a complete kit of wires, LEDs, sensors, and other electronic components, including an Uno R3 board, as well as over 25 hours of instruction on everything from the basics of Arduino to step-by-step project guides. It's like a complete college course on programming and robotics in a convenient digital form. Normally the bundle sells for $608.94, but you can get your tinkering mitts on it at an 85 percent discount for only $89.99.
Once you've learned the basics of Arduino, here are some other awesome projects you can use to feed your "constructing artificial animals that do your bidding" appetite.
Every achievement of human ingenuity has been but a brick on the path to the DIY Bionic Lizard (a project that definitely wasn't commissioned by our lizard overlords). The lizard is an entirely self-contained project designed to teach robotics and programming to beginners, and it also serves as a fun challenge for more advanced aspiring roboticists. The lizard comes with everything you need to build it and is fully Arduino compatible, so you can program it to walk and presumably run small lizard errands for you. The Bionic Lizard normally sells for $65.99, but you can take 16 percent off and get it for just $54.99.
The Flexbot Hexacopter is a DIY drone that's more customizable than a frozen yogurt topping bar. It's fully compatible with Arduino, giving you the ability to program the Flexbot with your own coding to do things such as lowering flight noise and adding or removing signals.
You can even create your own additions to the Flexbot's design by 3D-printing new components yourself, such as a model of Nicolas Cage's face to hang on one side, with John Travolta's on the other. Plus, the Flexbot is controlled directly from your smartphone, so you can easily face off with the sky. Normally the Hexacopter would set you back $119.99, but right now you can get one at 25 percent off for only $89.99.
The SainSmart 4WD Robot Car is the perfect choice if you want to use your new Arduino skills to go off-roading with a background character from a Pixar movie. But this nifty gadget is about more than just passing a resemblance to Disney offshoots. It's a fully programmable four-wheel drive car that you build piece by resplendent piece. The Arduino compatibility allows you to easily control it from your computer as you drive around your house and/or neighborhood to terrify all the cats and children. Normally the SainSmart Robot Car sells for $95.99, but today you can get one at 18 percent off for $77.99.
If you're looking for the most adorable way to flex your Arduino muscles, the SunFounder Nano DIY 4-DOF Robot Kit is your curling bar. The kit includes a fully programmable tiny robot called the Sloth that you can teach to walk, kick, dance, or lounge around the house. The Sloth even has a module that allows it to detect and avoid obstacles, which is something conspicuously absent from all of those YouTube videos of DARPA robots crashing into tables and falling over. Normally the SunFounder Nano Robot Kit sells for $59.99, but you can get one right now at 16 percent off for only $49.99.
Got all the friends you can handle? Make The Machines Work For You With These 4 Robot Vacuums.