Tell us about yourself
E-Blox is an emerging leader in educational electronic toys and products that engage children to Learn by Building. Based in Buffalo Grove, Illinois, E-Blox was launched in 2016 by Art Seymour and his sons James and Joseph after more than 90+ years of combined experience as entrepreneurs, inventors, and designers in the educational toys and wireless industries. E-Blox’s founders are now leading the way to a whole new generation of educational toys that give children of all ages the building blocks of a STREAM education–Science, Technology, Reading/wRiting, Engineering, the Arts, and Math–through the joy of play and discovery. With E-Blox’s plug-together bricks and modules, kids can build literally dozens and dozens of toys and games that light up and make sounds and that they can animate and control remotely from an E-Blox remote control device, their smartphone or tablet. With E-Blox, a child can easily build a robot that walks and responds to simple commands….or a “pet” that makes sounds…or a working FM radio…or an airplane propeller that spins at different speeds. Most anything kids can imagine, they can build with E-Blox. Learn more about Our Products. E-Blox toys are designed to stimulate a child’s imagination and creativity, and teach every child to investigate our world through interactive storytelling, creative reasoning, and systematic building of objects that will provide endless hours of fun and learning.
What are you presenting at Pleasant Prairie Mini Maker Faire?
There are three new E-Blox product lines that we will be presenting: Circuit Builder, pARTS and Stories. E-Blox Circuit Builder teaches the fundamentals of STEM through 59-120 projects that create fun circuits using larger construction parts that makes things light up, create sounds and launch fans in the air. E-Blox pARTS teaches the fundamentals of STEAM through the use of regular size construction parts that can create 3-D circuits that light up your builds. E-Blox Stories teaches the fundamentals of STREAM (adds reading/writing to STEAM) by including a fun story with educational QR links to topics related to the story and lets you build figures in the stories that light up. At the show we will not only show cool builds using these products, but will provide interactive opportunities for the public to play with these products.
What inspires you to make?
Our mission at E-Blox is to make learning the fundamentals of STEM, STEAM and STREAM through electronics fun so that kids and even adults of all ages want to learn more because they are having fun building things that light up, make sounds and have motion. Watching the public’s expression and eyes grow big when they see the types of things you can make with our products inspires us all to continue innovating our product to do more.
What project have you made that you are proud of, and why?
We have made three skyscrapers, a US flag and a football helmet that all light up with no wires. We are proud of these master builds because they not only required creativity to build some cool looking things, but they also required 3D Electronic Circuit design creativity to be able to make these master builds light up brightly with the least amount of current draw.
What tips or advice would you give someone who want to become a Maker?
Have a vision and follow it through with integrity, honesty and passion. You will not fail if you work hard and never give up on you dreams.
Tell us about one of your failed projects.
We don’t consider any project a failure…all projects are at a minimum a learning experience. One of our learning experiences was with our LED modules. We originally designed them where the clear top was used to press the LED leads against the tin plated base to provide the contacts. We learned quickly that pulling on the clear top can lead to a poor connection which makes the LED not light up. We quickly re-deigned and re-tooled the LED module to use screws to connect the LED to the tin plated base and went to laser cutting to separate the positive and negative sides of the LED base and now have a much better LED module. One of the lessons learned is to not move too quickly. If we had gone to market with the old LED modules there would have been lots of issues, but by taking our time and optimizing this module we have much better products that are leading to phenomenal responses to our product from the public.