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Thinking inside the box

Thinking inside the box

Discovery BoxOne of my most memorable finds at Toy Fair isn’t going to be available for sale any time soon. It’s barely more than a fascinating prototype right now, but wow – it’s got potential. Isaac Bowman is a carpenter from Lexington, Kentucky. As a birthday gift for some niece or nephew, he made something he calls a Discovery Box. It could pass as a work of art, but it’s actually a toy. Inside the box, he has a series of playthings. At the center, there’s a marble run constructed of copper piping. On one side, there’s an experiment in electricity, on another side, a checkers board and a set of cork game pieces. Carved into the wood are inspirational quotes, mathematical formulas and funny pictures. The outside of the box is decorated with more quotes and kid-friendly stickers.

Isaac BowmanWho knows where Mr. Bowman will take this idea. He invested in a booth at Toy Fair, so he must have aspirations, but there’s a lot of work to do before it’s ready for production. It’s hard to tell what age he’s targeting; there’s so much going on inside the box. But if he can find a way to refine and mass produce this sort of creativity, people will buy it.

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