If you’re a good (or even beginning) programmer, you might want to experiment with robotics. Unfortunately, it’s not just a matter of plugging a few more lines of code into your Arduino or Raspberry Pi program, you have to actually build something. Although you could always construct something from scratch, the LittleArm offers an interesting, and very reasonably priced–under $100 before shipping–alternative.
As mentioned in the title, this arm is 3D printed, and the gripper is interchangeable so you can customize it as you see fit. Programming is done via desktop software that you can use to set movement waypoints. You can reprogram the included Arduino Uno board, which comes loaded with LittleArm firmware.
The arm’s electronics and code are open source, so changing things at the Arduino level should be relatively straight forward. It even includes an integrated breadboard on which to add sensors or other gadgets as needed.
If this all sounds interesting, be sure to check out the video below to see how it works in the real world. Apparently it can play chess, add sugar to your coffee (and your table), and even draw a simple face!