Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Assorted Lego

Brickit app uses smarts to organise Lego for you

Nearly every child and even many an adult has a collection of bricks and bits of Lego, and now there’s an app to help you do something with it.

If you’re a kid at heart, love building things, or have kids, there’s a very good chance you have Lego, and look fondly upon the experience of playing with it. It could be the chunky blocks for little kids in Duplo or the smaller bricks everyone knows in Lego, but there’s a good chance you have some somewhere, whether it’s in a bag, a box, or a really big bag in a box.

Lego is everywhere, and typically not found in the tiny plastic bags the company ships the pieces in, even in the world of augmented reality with the recent Vidiyo Lego. Even there, it’s not as if you’re going to keep everything perfectly separated, with Lego invariably just become part of a bigger chaotic bunch of blocks. It happens.

Wouldn’t it be nice to know what you could make from the Lego that you have, even in its massive mess of chaos and colour and confusion?

There’s an app for that.

The Brickit process: flatten your Lego, snap your Lego, and then see things to do with your Lego.

Available initially to iPhone first (and iPad and iPod touch), Brickit is a Lego analysis app that uses your camera, machine learning, and an understanding of Lego bricks and combination to make your downtime a little more fun.

The app will take a shot of Lego after it’s been poured on the floor or rug, something you’ll need to flatten the best you can.

Basically, just do some quick work making sure Lego isn’t heaped on top of each other entirely, and the app will then snap your Lego collection, scanning the number of pieces, the type of pieces, and then working out what you can make with the pieces you have.

Brickit honing in on various Lego and Duplo blocks.

The version of the Lego projects you’re making seem to come from the real place, with step-by-step instructions going so far as to tell you where the similar bricks you have are in your pile, and then having you follow the directions and make them. The results may not be entirely accurate, because you might not have the same colours, but they’re close, allowing you to filter your own imagination in the Lego build process, and following the directions of various ideas to make Lego creations from what you already have in your Lego pile.

Testing it this week, the good news is that while Brickit is designed to work with Lego, it also seems to work with the Lego for little people, too: Duplo. In the world of Lego for toddlers, Duplo instructions seem to come from the real thing, but that they work just as well, and allow you to build shapes for the larger blocks in Duplo.

The app does come with the odd bug or two, and we noticed at least one that forced us to close it down and try again, but it’s a great idea that delivers a little more fun with that pile of Lego so many children (and adults) have at their disposal in a box somewhere.

You’ll find Brickit on the App Store for iOS, and bizarrely, it’s not made by Lego, but rather by fans of the building toy, with an Android version set to arrive later on.

You can make things with Lego and Duplo using Brickit
We made a tall bird as Brickit suggested. At least we think it’s a tall bird. We added an eye of sorts up top to make a cyclops bird.
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