Simple Toys Made Out Of Hacked E-Waste

Simple Toys Made Out Of Hacked E-Waste
Arts & Culture

Thinkertoys makes pianos out of old keyboards and is committed to converting the world's tech waste into functional toys for children in developing nations.

Lamya Hussain
  • 29 march 2012

ThinkerToys began as a one-man-show with Dhairya Dand who was on a mission to set up an openToys community where designers and engineers would be tasked with creating innovative ways to re-use e-waste. Dand has so far created four ThinkerToys prototype kid modules that encompass the Arduino computer as a platform with added custom chips, code and a fitted kit-specific component like a serial LCD screen, speaker or a VS 1053B MP3 decoder. While these projects are still in their initial stages and are in need of further development, Dand explains his goals in an interview with Gizmag:

[Creating] production quality custom hardware that can go out and be used as toys for kids in the developing world, especially starting with kids who work and live near landfills.

Dand is finding inspiration from the work of a researcher at Keio-NUS CUTE Centre and Mixed Reality Lab in Singapore. The research was involved in creating a simple and cheap edutainment kit module that can be easily shipped to developing countries where e-waste is transported for disposal. The kids would then be paired with discarded but functional tech such as PS2, keyboards, mice, speakers etc. Dand is extremely motivated to develop his concepts, he is currently perfecting existing prototypes and for the future has larger plans in converting e-waste into toys for children. Gizmag reports:

Dand also plans to return to Cambodia in May 2012 to start a pilot production run in collaboration with a rural school. He intends to live with the kids while evaluating which kits prove the most popular, and “ figure out the power-problem—one solution is to have a single solar-based charging station in the village, where kids come charge their toys and play.”

With innovative design and engineering, Dand is proposing an alternative to pile-stocking e-waste. He is also challenging the normative disposal tactics of e-waste in a developing context.


Arts & Culture

Why The Apple Watch Is Taking Foot In The Restaurant Industry

Travel Today

Delta Lets Flyers Track Their Luggage From The Airplane To The Airport

The airline's new app allows customers to see exactly where their baggage is throughout their journey

Food Today

Chef Turns Invasive Species Into Delicious Sushi

Creator Bun Lai is adapting strange new ingredients for his menu, which responds to the ecological impact of overabundant creatures in the local environment


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Gaming & Play Today

Build Your Own Subway System In This Minimalist Game

Mini Metro lets you design your own fully functional transit network, simulating the flow of urban commuters with pared-down visuals

Work Today

Keyboard Designed To Help Women Use More Assertive Language

The device is a commentary on gender roles in the workplace, and features easy access to "power verbs" that help reinforce a habit of being direct in writing

Related Expert

Jon Burgerman

Guerrilla Doodler

Arts & Culture Today

Spanish Artist Dreams Up What Animals Would Look Like In Modern Clothing

Yago Partal's portraits depict the fantasized style preferences of creatures worldwide, from an Arctic wolf to a zebra

Fitness & Sport Today

New Data Technologies Make Hyper-Personalized Training A Reality

The Sports Debrief from PSFK Labs looks at how analytics tools are being developed to optimize human performance across all industries

Technology Today

IBM Watson Helps Grammy-Winning Producer Craft An EP

The computer system's data technology generated musical scores for Alex Da Kid's first solo project


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed Yesterday

General Electric: Lighting’s Impact On Sleep Is More Than The Off Switch

Jeff Patton, General Manager of Connected Home Products at GE Lighting, uncovers how lighting technologies can affect our sleep cycles

PSFK Labs october 25, 2016

The Keys For Exceptional Performance On And Off The Field

PSFK Labs' new report highlights five important insights for businesses to perform better than the competition

Travel Yesterday

30-Year-Old Photographs Used As Travel Guides

A new photo series revolves around tracing the origins of images from the past

Children Yesterday

IKEA Is Letting Kids Design Its New Line Of Toys

The products are taken from fanciful drawings that showcase the imagination of those who use it most

Technology Yesterday

Album Turns Into Something New Each Time It’s Streamed

Bill Baird's new album explores the relationship between time and music through a website crafted by design team, One Pixel Wide

Health Yesterday

VR App Prescribed For Pain Relief

A pharmacy chain in Sweden is stepping away from tradition to develop a happy place for the pain-afflicted

Retail Yesterday

Banks Are Coming Together To Create A New Payment Network That Rivals Venmo

A number of financial institutions are collaborating to make a new person-to-person monetary system called Zelle for their customers

Media & Publishing Yesterday

Pocket Camera Aims To Facilitate The Struggles Of Live Streams

The Mevo helps resolve the complexities of streaming video with an intuitive setup and smart editing controls

Health Yesterday

Startup Believes Traceability Will Help Disrupt The Multivitamin Industry

Ritual is a daily supplement for women that traces every ingredient back to its source

Arts & Culture Yesterday

Photo Series Brutally Murders Some Of Your Favorite Fast Food

The portraits by artist duo Ilka & Franz do away with mealtime regulars in a way that is both beautiful and humorous

No search results found.