A reader wrote in to mention a writeup of a really great Mythbusters project. Hyneman, Savage, and Imahara went out and purchased a 'Vex' robot kit from RadioShack, and constructed the bot to see what it was like
. They were pleasantly surprised. From the article: "Jamie Hyneman: I must admit I was expecting to turn up my nose at a do-it yourself robotics kit from Radio Shack. But guess what? The VEX System kicks butt. In a total of about 12 person-hours, Adam Savage and Grant Imahara (my cohosts on MythBusters) and I were able to build a functional, if somewhat basic, prototype equivalent of an iRobot's PackBot."