Game Boy Will Be the Latest Classic Nintendo Console to Receive an Upgrade

Koisny, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

In 2016, Nintendo delighted nostalgic gamers with the release of the NES Classic. The miniature console was too popular for its own good, selling out faster than stores could restock it. The success of the SNES Classic in fall 2017 proved that the retro console trend isn't limited to the NES. Now, peripheral manufacturer Hyperkin is revamping one of Nintendo's most iconic classic consoles before the Japanese gaming giant beats them to it. As Gizmodo reports, a new and improved Game Boy is currently in development.

Hyperkin announced the gadget, tentatively named the Ultra Game Boy, at this year's Consumer Electronics Show. It's modeled after the Game Boy Pocket and includes the same volume and contrast dials and 8-bit screen players remember.

But they will also notice some major upgrades. The body is made from sturdy aluminum, making it more resistant to dents and scratches if dropped. Hyperkin plans to add a third dial that will let users adjust the backlit LCD display, or they can turn it off completely if they want to play the way they did in 1996. Other new features include a built-in 6-hour battery, USB-C port for charging, and left and right audio output connections. Listening to mono sound through a fancy sound system may not make a big difference to most gamers, but the update will make it easier for musicians to use the console to create chiptunes.

The biggest feature that's missing is the built-in games aspect offered by the NES and SNES. Because the Ultra Game Boy is coming from Hyperkin, not Nintendo, users will need to provide the original cartridges to play it. But if you've been holding on to your game collection for the past 20 years, the new console may be a smart purchase. It's set to retail for less than $100 when it hits stores as anticipated in late summer 2018.

[h/t Gizmodo]

Turn Your LEGO Bricks Into a Drone With the Flybrix Drone Kit


Now more than ever, it’s important to have a good hobby. Of course, a lot of people—maybe even you—have been obsessed with learning TikTok dances and baking sourdough bread for the last few months, but those hobbies can wear out their welcome pretty fast. So if you or someone you love is looking for something that’s a little more intellectually stimulating, you need to check out the Flybrix LEGO drone kit from Fat Brain Toys.

What is a Flybrix LEGO Drone Kit?

The Flybrix drone kit lets you build your own drones out of LEGO bricks and fly them around your house using your smartphone as a remote control (via Bluetooth). The kit itself comes with absolutely everything you need to start flying almost immediately, including a bag of 56-plus LEGO bricks, a LEGO figure pilot, eight quick-connect motors, eight propellers, a propeller wrench, a pre-programmed Flybrix flight board PCB, a USB data cord, a LiPo battery, and a USB LiPo battery charger. All you’ll have to do is download the Flybrix Configuration Software, the Bluetooth Flight Control App, and access online instructions and tutorials.

Experiment with your own designs.

The Flybrix LEGO drone kit is specifically designed to promote exploration and experimentation. All the components are tough and can totally withstand a few crash landings, so you can build and rebuild your own drones until you come up with the perfect design. Then you can do it all again. Try different motor arrangements, add your own LEGO bricks, experiment with different shapes—this kit is a wannabe engineer’s dream.

For the more advanced STEM learners out there, Flybrix lets you experiment with coding and block-based coding. It uses an arduino-based hackable circuit board, and the Flybrix app has advanced features that let you try your hand at software design.

Who is the Flybrix LEGO Drone Kit for?

Flybrix is a really fun way to introduce a number of core STEM concepts, which makes it ideal for kids—and technically, that’s who it was designed for. But because engineering and coding can get a little complicated, the recommended age for independent experimentation is 13 and up. However, kids younger than 13 can certainly work on Flybrix drones with the help of their parents. In fact, it actually makes a fantastic family hobby.

Ready to start building your own LEGO drones? Click here to order your Flybrix kit today for $198.

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How to Brew Your Own Fluorescent Beer at Home

The Odin
The Odin

If you're one of the many people who made their own sourdough starter in quarantine, you already know yeast is a living thing. That means its biological makeup can be tweaked using genetic engineering. As Gizmodo reports, that's exactly what a former NASA biologist has done to create his new fluorescent yeast kits.

A few years ago, Josiah Zayner left his job as a synthetic biologist for NASA to found The Odin, a company that lets anyone experiment with genetic science at home. His recently launched yeast kit accomplishes this in an eye-catching way. Thanks to a fluorescent protein from jellyfish, yeast that's been genetically modified with the kit glows green under a black or blue light.

Despite looking like a prop from a sci-fi film, the yeast is still yeast. That means it can be used in home-brewing projects if you want to take the science experiment a step further. According to Eater, yeast made with the kit ferments and fluoresces when added to honey and water. If you brew a batch of beer with the right amount of yeast, the final product will emit an otherworldly glow when viewed under a blacklight. The kit hasn't been FDA approved, but the company states the materials are nontoxic and nonallergenic, and beer made with it will still taste like beer.

You can purchase a fluorescent yeast kit from The Odin's online shop for $169. If you're looking for more ways to experiment with genetic technology at home, the company also sells kits that let you play with frog and bacteria DNA.

[h/t Gizmodo]