As a child I played with the old metal meccano/erector sets. As an adult I even occasionally used metal meccano parts as inexpensive fixturing inside of vacuum chambers. I decided to buy one of the new (plastic) meccano meccanoid robot kits. Meccano's meccabrain has more outputs than do Lego NXT or EV3. Speech recognition and the ability to use a smartphone camera as input for motion capture is also interesting. There is nothing like the range of commercially available NXT compatible sensors, however. I plan to try to hack the meccabrain inputs.
I have seen people who have hacked the meccabrain software. We'll see if this platform can be interfaced with Asa H.