By definition, a gadget is a small tool with a particular function that makes our lives easier. Throughout history, mankind has developed plenty of gadgets and gizmos. Many of these gadgets have failed, but plenty have also succeeded. I believe it’s important for us and our kids to learn about them.
Gadgetarium is a brand new app from Gutenbergz that highlights a selection of the most influential gadgets in the history of mankind. It also allows you to combine two or more of these gadgets to create your own innovation.
From 5000 BC to 2013 AD
Gadgetarium has two main parts: Timeline and Gadgetbox. To switch between these parts, simply tap on the white label matching the section name.
In the Timeline section, you can discover 23 of the world’s greatest gadgets, from the wheel (found in 5000 BC) to Google Glass (announced in 2013). These gadgets are depicted as hand-drawn illustrations and accompanied by a professional English narrator who introduced the gadgets with a slight humor.
You can move up and down in the timeline to learn what gadgets were influential in an era. For example, you can learn about abacus and compass if you scroll through the BC period, and about Macintosh and the iPhone if you scroll through the last three decades. You will also find many interesting gadgets in between, such as clocks, photo camera, radio, light bulb, television, polaroid, calculator, and the walkman. You will also find non-electronic ones, such as spectacles, microscope, and thermometer.
In the Gadgetbox section, you can mix two or more gadgets to create a new product that will actually work. For example, I created a combination of an umbrella and a compass, where the umbrella will open and close when the compass is pointed to a different direction.
Parents Need to Know
Even though you can freely jump from one point in the timeline to the next, I’d recommend you start reading from the older entries first and moving up to the newer ones. This helps to put things into perspective and lets us appreciate more of what the mankind have achieved. It’s a fun and colorful way to learn about history of gadgets that would otherwise be presented in a boring encyclopedia.
Gadgetarium works great in Airplane mode. Only if you want to share your custom gadget creations to Facebook or Twitter would you need an Internet connection. The app has no advertising and no in-app purchases. It is now available for iPad only and covers a bit of History and Science subjects that are appropriate for ages seven and up. Older kids can enjoy more details about each gadget by reading the detailed description available in the pull-down navigation.
Things I Like
A great feature in Gadgetarium is the ability to get a 360-degree view of a gadget. This allows you to rotate it and see what it would like from different angles.
I also like how the app includes not only tech gadgets but also important non-digital gizmos that have become staples in many households, such as kettle and the sewing machine. I also learned a few things that I didn’t expect to see in a history of gadgets for kids, such as the hands-free umbrella called Nubrella and the WiFi-enabled kettle.
My personal favorite gadget in the catalog is the Swiss Army knife with an MP3 player built into it. It’s been my personal obsession to own a pocket knife, and I think this may be the one for me.
Gadgetarium is a fun trivia app that displays 23 gadgets invented between 5000 BC and 2013 AD. The catalog includes electronic and non-electronic gadgets, wearables, and other innovative products. A cool feature lets you combine existing gadgets to create your own. Suitable for ages 7+
Get it on the App Store: iPad
App was provided for our honest review.