I asked for (and got) a Perplexus puzzle sphere for Christmas. I had thought I’d bring it to work, as a companion to the Rubik’s 360 I keep on my desk (it’s a great conversation starter, and fun to play with while I’m on phone meetings – shh! :-). But the Perplexus has become so popular with everyone at home (even 3yo Gabe, who does surprisingly well with it once you get him started) that I don’t dare take it to work for fear of angering Emma, Gabe and Rachel.
What is a Perplexus? It’s like one of those marble labyrinth toys, where you twist and turn to move a steel bearing along a path. Except it’s in 3D, and completely encased inside a 10 inch plastic sphere. The insides of it look like colorful plastic brain matter, and it’s lots of fun to play with. I first heard about it in Make magazine, where they did a story on its creator, Michael McGinnin, and the giant-sized “Superplexuses” he creates (I WANT one of those!). BoingBoing also wrote about it (again) recently.
Here’s a video of 6yo Emma playing with it and explaining it. Watch to the end to see her highly advanced technique.