The Instigator
Raisor
Pro (for)
Losing
30 Points
The Contender
PartamRuhem
Con (against)
Winning
32 Points

Resolved: K'nex are better than Legos

Do you like this debate?NoYes+8
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 15 votes the winner is...
PartamRuhem
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/20/2011 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 23,282 times Debate No: 19985
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (22)
Votes (15)

 

Raisor

Pro

This is R2 of Socialpinko's debate tournament.

First round for rules/definitions.

Rules:


1. There are no restrictions on argumentative strategy.
2. Burden of proof is shared.
3. This debate concerns the resolution:

RESOLVED: K'nex are better than Legos.

4. New arguments brought in the last round will not be counted.
5. R1 is for acceptance and clarifications. Rules and Definitions in R1 are binding. Substantively violating the R1 agreements will result in disqualification.
6. Spelling/Grammer and Conduct will NOT be voted on unless: a) explicitly argued for in the debate round AND b) voting occurs on the grounds argued for in the debate.
7. Sources must be posted in the debate round.

Definitions:
K'nex - The K'nex brand of children's toy, taken to include the entire line of K'nex product.
Legos - The Lego brand of children's toy, taken to include the entire line of Lego product.
PartamRuhem

Con

I thank my opponent for setting up such a hot topic for debate. In this second round of SocialPinko's tournament, I will argue that K'nex are not better than Legos.

This means that if I present a case which proves Legos and K'nex to be equal, one is not better than the other, therefore giving me the win.

Also, if I may present Legos to be better than K'nex, I will also win.....but a crucial definition that needs to be provided is that of better.

For this debate, the following definition of better will be used

Better- more advantageous or effective [1]

Let the battle of the undefeated's COMMENCE

Source
1. http://www.merriam-webster.com...
Debate Round No. 1
Raisor

Pro

I would like to begin this debate by saying that I am a structural engineer in training, so this is an issue I find to be close to my heart.

A) Versatility

K’nex can be used to make almost and object imaginable-the only limit is the imagination and creativity of the builder. Especially unique about K’nex is the ability for anyone to make impressively large models. While Legos can in principle be used to make large scale models, in practice the amount of pieces and time required to do so renders it infeasible for an amateur.

Take a look at some of the amateur Knex models and note the diversity in content and scale:

Clock:

Boat:

Start Trek Spaceship:


What is key to note here is that K’nex makes the design dreams of any builder within reach. 10 year old me could never hope to build a 12 foot tall Lego tower- I had neither the Lego connection nor time to do so. That same project was well within the grasp of a 10 year old child when the building materials under consideration were K’nex.

The fundamental building principle of Legos is one dimensional: you stack bricks on top of each other. In contrast, K’nex snap together via the knobs on the ends of the rods or via the ridges along the length of the rod- giving two principle means of connecting pieces and allowing almost any 3-D configuration imaginable. Legos had to overcome this one dimensionality by adding special pieces, but anyone who has spent any time with legos knows how frustrating it is to be in need of just the right joint and having to pick through the lego bin hoping that one piece you need surfaces.

The versatility of K’nex in comparison to Legos is underscored by the way in which the two are sold. My first K’nex kit came in a simple orange box and was accompanied by a book of a hundred different things you could build with just that box. Lego kits come in boxes that show one type of model on it and instructions to build that one model. Each kit had pieces tailor made to build that model; over the years hundreds of unique types of lego pieces have come out.

B) Moveable Structures

One of the most notable aspects of the K’nex franchise is the ability to use the pieces to construct models which have motion at the core of their function.

Tank with functioning treads:

Crane:

Custom Rollercoaster (see video)

Simplicity of design makes K’nex motion achievable with only the basic building pieces. From that original orange box I received as a child I was able to make crank powered ferris wheels and amusement park rides. Yes, Lego is able to achieve limited motion through some of the later models that include axles and gears and motors- but it is important to note that Lego motion requires special pieces, and even then is unable to achieve the range of moveable structures offered by K’nex.

C) Engineering Education

K’nex provides easy analogy for the development of intuition in structural engineering. The basic building form means that most structures are build from trusses, allowing children to lean from an early age how trusses function to distribute the load. When I built K’nex bridges as a child, I noticed that a flat bridge sagged but that if you built a truss the structure stayed rigid and could span a gap. Additionally, K’nex structures fail in ways that inform engineering intuition. Lack of adequate bracing on tall structures causes supports to bow outward and fail (buckling).

The flexibility of K’nex also makes them useful for engineering education. A common program that engineering universities hold involves getting 5th-6th grade students to build small towers using basic principles of earthquake engineering. These K’nex structures are then placed on a “shake table”- a table that simulates an earthquake so that the students can see how an earthquake causes buildings to respond and fall down.

The moveable structure aspect of K’nex also gives rise to engineering challenges, providing the impetus for kids to think critically about how to overcome problems with innovative design. One project I worked on was the design of a “drop ride” – a ride that lifts a car up a tower, drops the car at the top, then safely stops the car at the bottom. This project required me to figure out how to cause the car to automatically release from the lifting mechanism as the top of the tower and then to stop without crashing at the bottom. This was an engineering challenge I had come up with on my own and that I had to solve using my own creativity. For a toy to engage a 5th grader in such a way is truly valuable.

D) Cultural Appropriation

The popular Lego line “Bionicles” uses words of Maori origin as well as relying on Maori folklore for the basic storyline premise. The Lego line uses Maori words like “Tohunga” (native healer) and “Toa” (warrior). The use of such words prompted a lawsuit by a group of ethnic Maoris to block the copyright of their culture for the purpose of marketing toys [1].

This behavior on the part of Lego is an instance of cultural appropriation and is problematic for two reasons. First, it represents the fictionalization of a culture of a group of peoples indigenous to New Zealand who have historically been the victims of unjust treatment at the hands of Western culture. This fictionalization has the effect of erasing Maori culture and replacing it with the story of plastic Legos. For 85% of American boys, “Toa” are nothing more than the name of the next item on their Christmas list [2]. Second, it represents the nonconsensual use of native people’s culture for the profit of a corporation. The Maori people were not consulted in the appropriation of their language nor did they receive compensation. Essentially their culture was used to make a quick buck by the Lego corporation.

We should not stand for the abuse of indigenous peoples and so should universally reject the product of any company involved in such activity. Toys should come with a clean conscience.

[1] tinyurl.com/bubvh7t

[2] tinyurl.com/cq24l43

PartamRuhem

Con

I will only use this round to present my case why Legos are either equal to K'nex, or that Legos meet the definition of better I provided last round. I won't refute my opponent's arguments till next round.

The contentions I will be arguing for are:

1. Cultural/Economical benefits
2. Popular Demand
3. Easy Handling
4. Unlimited Imagination


I will now begin my case.

1. Cultural/Economical benefits

When looking at which is better between Legos and K'nex, you must analyze the amount of credibility and cultural appreciation each receives. It's obvious that Legos are culturally more beneficial, but they are also economically beneficial as well. Take Lego Land for example. LegoLands are extremely beneficial to both the kids and the welfare of the state. This amusement park adventure shows how versatile Legos can really be (see link to picture of completely working lego car) and help stimulate tourism in the area.

http://blogs.cars.com...

In Polk county, Florida, something remarkable is happening. Even in this horrible economy, Polk is affluent and happy. Tourism is increasing tenfold because of the local LegoLand. A 5% increase in "bed" tax applies to anyone staying under 6 months in Polk County, giving the county a large increase in funds, which all go back to the community in ways such as museums, sports, and more tourist attractions [1].

"It's a sustainable economic engine that continues to bolster our activities," said Mark Jackson, director of Polk County Tourism and Sports Marketing. "So that additional revenue will be invested in marketing programs that provide a maximum return on investment." [1].

The county collects $9.5 million per year due to tourism [1]. LegoLand alone is boosting the economy, something that cannot be said of K'nex. Sure, there are profits on both sides, but with Lego brand amusement parks giving such hope and economic freedom to so many people in such a dire time truly shows it to be better. Think of all the jobs LegoLand employs. Think of the children that are smiling and not worrying about their laid off father because of the comfort of legos. Think of the revenue that is stimulating local counties. And this LegoLand isn't the only one. There are numerous legolands around the globe, with plans for more to be built [2].
Let's not forget how positively this effects the people living in Polk. This vast sum of money can only be spent on beneficial community attractions, such as sports programs, museums, and various other arts centers.

2. Popular Demand
As I have shown with LegoLand, legos are pretty popular; how else could one company afford AMUSEMENT PARKS all about their product? Not just one, mind you, but multiple parks. Now, I will show a series of facts proving Lego's popular demand, thus showing it to be more advantageous, and better.

- There are about 62 LEGO bricks for every one of the world's 6 billion inhabitants.
- Children around the world spend 5 billion hours a year playing with LEGO bricks.
- More than 400 billion LEGO bricks have been produced since 1949. Stacked on top of each other, this is enough to connect the Earth and the Moon ten times over.
- 7 LEGO sets are sold by retailers every second around the world.
- The LEGO bricks sold in one year would circle the world 5 times.

The above facts are provided all by source [3].

Honestly, the same cannot be said about K'nex. Legos is obviously the more demanded of the two, and is also economically advantageous as I have proven, while K'nex are not.

Easy Handling
*NOTE: This is not a refutation, but a conflict of contentions, which I must elaborate on*

The design of Legos are so simple and entertaining that a plethora of companies have sprung up trying to imitate Legos. Unfortunately, K'nex, one of these companies, has made a mess of their attempt. Sure, you can build cranes and elaborate engineering creations, but at a large cost. The variety of complex K'nex needed to accomplish anything past a simple structure creates too much stress in users. Hours of concentration and failure must be endured if one is to make the smallest of structures, while Lego's offers simplicity, while still accomplishing the same goal of entertaining the user, and showing how basic engineering feats work. Contrary to what my opponent states, K'nex take time to master, just as building with real materials takes time to master. With the easy handling of Lego brand items, it's no wonder they have such a high demand.

4. Unlimited imagination
Now, a Lego can be found in any toy store; Walmarts and Targets; malls across the world; even mom and pop shops carry legos. K'nex, on the other hand, have too much complexity in their parts. You can buy certain sets, but that completely limits the imagination of the user (remember, the target audience here is kids), which is not more advantageous to anyone. Legos are basically a vast amount of interchangeable parts, thus giving the kids unlimited things to build and create. As I have proven, K'nex are only effective when in sets, and once the item is finished being built (after too many hours, mind you), there is little more you can do except look at it.

|Conclusion|
I have shown how Legos are actually more effective and advantageous then K'nex, which meets my definition of better. Legolands across the world are creating jobs, stimulating revenues, and putting smiles on faces. The Lego brand is a much higher demand product, showing it to me more advantageous. And it's not a mystery why! Legos are affordable, easy to handle, and literally give you the option to create almost anything!

Sources
1. http://www.theledger.com...
2. http://en.wikipedia.org...
3. http://www.neatorama.com...
Debate Round No. 2
Raisor

Pro

1. Cultural/Economical benefits

Arguments concerning Legoland should be excluded from this debate for the following reasons:

a) The Resolution clearly states that this debate is about the “Lego brand of children’s toy”, not theme parks associated with the Lego company. This definition was clearly agreed to in R1. This debate is about toys not theme parks.

b) Legoland is not owned by Lego. The parks are owned and operated by the British company Merlin Entertainment. [1]. Legoland is therefore outside the scope of the debate.

The economic benefits of Legoland are irrelevant to a discussion over which is better, Lego toys or K’nex toys.

Additionally, the economic benefit throughout the world due to education from K’nex is much greater than the localized benefit of a few theme parks.

2. Popular Demand

First, pointing out that there are more Legos in the world doesn’t prove them to be better. There are more grains of sand in the world than there are people, this doesn’t mean grains of sand are better than people.

Second, showing that there is high demand for Legos doesn’t prove them to be better, it just proves that they are marketed better. Additionally, K’nex are very popular as well- there are hundreds of youtube videos showing operating ball towers, roller coasters, bridges, engines, etc. Both brands are very popular- reducing the quality of the product to a numbers game between sales figures ignores the true value of the products we are arguing about. K’nex are not awesome because people buy it, K’nex are awesome because they foster creativity and get young people interested in engineering and design.

3. Easy Handling

My opponent’s claim that K’nex requires too many complicated pieces and takes to much time to master is quite simply false. The heart of K’nex is the rod and connector system, shown below:

All other K’nex piece rely on this system so tat once these three configurations are mastered, all subsequent K’nex pieces are mastered. Yes, this is slightly more complicated than the one-dimanesional snapping system of Legos but it is not so complicated that children as young as 5 are unable to master it and the benefits in construction versatility far exceed such a negligible cost.

To say that K’nex requires too many pieces to build simple objects is laughable when compared to Lego. Any true Lego fan is familiar with the pain of searching for that ONE piece you need to finish your creation. Just over Christmas I pulled out a Lego castle I built years ago for my young cousins to play with- the castle was nearly complete except for three holes in the roof, holes that existed solely because I was unable to find the piece I needed to fill them in. The fatal flaw of Lego is a reliance on highly specialized pieces that burdens the construction process.

These simple rocket ship models show the accessibility of K’nex:


4. Unlimited imagination
The claim that K’nex are only useful in sets is blatantly untrue. Look only to my opening round to see many models created based only on the designer’s creativity. I could provide image after image of K’nex model built without instructions to accompany them.

In truth it is Lego that relies on kit-like dissemination. Legos sell “Harry Potter” and “Star Wars” Legos that come with highly specialized pieces tailored to the set being sold. This limits creativity and encourages builders to stick with the original model rather than develop their own creations.

Look at this Star Wars Lego and note how many bizarre pieces are included on the model:

Compare this to the Star Trek spaceship I presented in R1, which relies on a small range of different K’nex pieces to create an impressive model.

A. Versatility.

This topic was covered in 3 and 4.
B. Moveable Structures

K’nex offers unparalleled ability to construct structures which are able to move. I gave one example of a rollercoaster in my opening round. Rollercoaster design is very popular within the Knex community; so popular, in fact, that Knex hosts a thrill ride design contest open to grade school classes and with a prize of amusement park tickets [3]

A simpler example is this functional scale, created by a proud young boy:

C. Engineering Education

Again I would like to demonstrate the unique way that K’nex is relatable to the world of engineering.

Here we see K’nex used to create a 14 foot long bridge that uses an arch to support the weight of the structure:

Note how few pieces were needed to make this elegant bridge. Such a structure is well within the grasp of any amateur K’nex builder without the need for specialized sets or an inordinately large number of pieces.

K’nex were further recognized by the engineering community when Concordia’s Women in Engineering chapter built a 37 foot tall space shuttle to celebrate National Engineering Week [2]:

In the following video (1:20-2:40) you can see 6th grade students applying engineering education using K’nex, followed by a seismic test of their designs. The students are clearly having a blast while learning about engineering design. Also note that the student actually correctly explains the use of foundation ties to prevent spreading in the event of liquefaction.

#t=01m20s

D. Cultural Appropriation

Toys should be a force of good in the world, teaching children skills and values that will make the world a better place. Toys which take advantage of other cultures for profit are morally reprehensible and should be absolutely rejected. When a company uses indigenous culture in their product without permission and elicits cries of protest from the culture it is abusing, that company is clearly acting unethically. This is exactly what Lego did in the creation of the Bionicle toys. K’nex is therefore ethically superior to Legos.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...

[2] http://theconcordian.com...

[3] http://www.knex.com...

PartamRuhem

Con

Cultural/Economical benefits

First, I would like to point out that LegoLand is completely relevant in this debate for the following counter-reasons. I would also like to note that my opponent himself shows how LegoLand is relevant by attempting to refute it past the simple "It's irrelevant". If he actually believed it to be irrelevant, he would have left it at that.

1. LegoLand is a product of Lego. My opponent's definition was "The Lego brand of children's toy, taken to include the entire line of lego product ". If we are to abide by these rules, the former part of the sentence is irrelevant, for the latter part (entire line of lego product) states that all lego products are fair game. SO not just the children's toys. LegoLand is a trademark of Lego and contains almost nothing but amazing feats of the Lego toys. Without Legos, there would be no LegoLand. Thus, LegoLand is a product of Legos, making it completely relevant.

May the reader note that in R1 my opponent explicitly stated that there are no restrictions on argumentative strategy, so this strategy does not violate ANY rules.

2. There is no reason that LegoLand be ruled out on the grounds that it is owned by Merlin Entertainment, for we are debating about the product itself. LegoLand is a product of Lego, therefore, no matter who actually owns the LegoLands, it's still relevant.

The economic benefits are extremely topical in this debate. May the reader recall my definition of better. It's extremely advantageous to have Lego over K'nex because of the economic benefit Lego's provides. This point still stands.

My opponent tries stating that K'nex offer education that leads to economic stimulus, but this is a completely hollow assumption, and nothing more.

2. Popular Demand
My opponent fails to realize that my statistics on Legos show how popular they are with children. "Children around the world spend 5 billion hours a year playing with LEGO bricks". If that's not enough to show how absolutely in demand Legos are, then you can see the other numbers I presented. This leads back to my definition of better through economics, again. Legos are more economically advantageous because they are so popular. Showing that there are more Legos then people shows that it's absolutely a valuable commodity.

Of course you can say there is more sand, but Legos need to be manufactured; costs go into producing them, so they would only keep producing them if they are making a profit. They are obviously making a profit, seeing as there are so many Lego's in production.

Showing a higher demand in Legos shows how the kids want Legos more than K'nex. Say it's marketing all you want, but the numbers stand. It's not just a market trick that leads Lego's in every house in America.

3. Easy Handling
My opponent concedes that K'nex require more time and are more complicated to master. I would like to remind the reader that these toys have a target audience; children. Would a 5-7 year old really spend long periods of time trying to work K'nex and trying to understand them? A better question would be do they have the attention span to do such a thing. This will be expanded later.

The same 'missing piece' situation can apply to K'nex, so here they are equal.

4. Unlimited Imagination

It's true that K'nex offers a large outlet for creativity, but the same can be said of Lego. Stating that it has more bizarre pieces in it's sets doesn't take away any value. If anything, it keeps kids interested, unlike engineering, which few kids are interested in. So here, it can be said they are equal.

Now on to my opponent's case for K'nex.

Versatility
I must make it clear that Lego has adapted many of the K'nex type toys; the type of snapping rods found in K'nex is also found in Legos. My opponent even acknowledges this in his R2. He tries making the case for K'nex by saying Lego pieces are more rare to come by, but this simply isn't true. Any pieces you need are accessible at any toy store.

In any event, I will concede that K'nex offers a large variety of structures that one can build; some of which Lego's could not mimic, but alas, the same can be said of K'nex. Their more realistic shapes takes away from the fun Lego provides. See my opponent's example of the Star Trek space ship. There are blasters and everything on that baby!

What's also important to note is that since Lego offers such a wide variety of kits with different pieces, it keeps users interested. Sure, on their own they could build a giant K'nex clock, but Lego's give kids a manual on how to build impressive models so that any kid can do it, and many different models to choose from. It's so much easier to follow instructions then to try and master engineering on your own, and this is why Lego is the more popular and advantageous product.

Moveable Structures
Lego can create moveable structures a well. The car. My opponent again conceded that Lego can do this. So again, they are equal.

Engineering Education
This point is an extreme stretch of the imagination. TO say that a young child has the patience and dedication to grasp even the basic concepts of engineering (trusses, pulleys, etc.) is naive. Children don't necessarily want to understand the engineering aspect behind the toy. My opponent is bias in this, as he is becoming an engineer himself, so of course he views this as an advantage. I also would view this as an extremely awesome advantage. However, the kids do not, seeing as Lego is much more popular. There is no way that K'nex are going to spark engineering interest. In fact, they haven't. "Employment of engineers is expected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations over the next decade ". This quote refutes this point. There will be no special rise in engineering

Source
1. http://www.bls.gov...
Debate Round No. 3
Raisor

Pro

Overview:

The two sides of this debate show two different views of what it means for toys to be good. My opponent chooses to focus on the economic gains and the particulars of how many units are sold- these are the arguments he leads with in his opening. I concern myself with the quality of the toy; I focus on versatility of use and the range of objects which can be built. My opponent sees toys as mere objects of entertainment and sees children as both lazy (“It's so much easier to follow instructions then to try and master engineering on your own”) and unintelligent (“To say that a young child has the patience and dedication to grasp even the basic concepts of engineering…is naive.”). I view toys as a way to engage children and expand their horizons. I view children as creative and curious.

When deciding this debate you should keep these competing frameworks in mind. Are toys simple economic goods we force on our bumbling youth as efficiently as possible? Or are toys the way we teach our children how to be good adults by encouraging critical thinking and creativity?

Cultural Appropriation:

My opponent has not answered this argument all round and at this point it is too late to do so. If my opponent brings up a new argument on this issue it must be ignored, as I will not have an opportunity to respond to it. This means I have proven that Legos are an unethical brand of toy. Lego lifted portion of Maori culture without consent, fictionalized and then sold indigenous Maori culture for profit. The result was a backlash from the Maori culture and a lawsuit to prevent the patenting by Lego of Maori words.

This behavior is clearly unethical. The total lack of response by my opponent demonstrates the indefensibility of this act. On this issue alone I have shown the K'nex are better than Legos because they are morally superior.

Engineering Education:

My opponent claims that children are too dumb, too unmotivated, to appreciate the engineering aspects of toys. He ignores my R3 video of children clearly explaining engineering concepts and then cheering with joy as these concepts are put to the test. He ignores my R2 picture of a child beaming over his functioning K’nex scale. Were these children too unmotivated and too dumb to learn from these toys?

My opponent conveniently ignores the following quote from his source in claiming that engineering is not growing: “Civil engineers are expected to have employment growth of 24 percent over the projections decade, much faster than the average for all occupations.” There is a great need for Civil engineers in the US- exactly the type of engineers that are inspired by construction of structures like the bridge I showed in R3.

Finally, engineering education is not just about inspiring children to become engineers. It is about training children to problem solve, to think critically, to understand that they have the ability to take a pile of colored rods and turn them into a tower or a rollercoaster. The most crucial aspect of K’nex is the way in which it empowers children to create, to create something that is of their own making, to know that they don’t need an instruction manual- that they have the power to design the world around them. These are skills and lessons that are valuable for all individuals and transcend vocational boundaries.

I have explained how K’nex has been embraced by the engineering community and has been used in classroom settings to teach kids. I have also shown amateur models that illustrate engineering principles. Con has shown no evidence of Lego’s educational benefit.

Usability:

First, the design of K’nex better allows for 3-D and moveable structures. This can be seen in the R2 images of a functioning crane and the pirate ship. The connection mechanism of K’nex means that pieces can be orientated in space, while the rod and hole connection allows for movement. In contrast, Legos connect only through a 1-D snapping system, meaning 3-D can only be achieved through layering or use of rare special connector pieces. Movement in Legos is extremely difficult and cannot be achieved on a scale anywhere close to that of K’nex. Note my opponent’s lack of examples of moveable Lego structures. The R3 image shows that the additional complexity of K’nex is very slight and negligible.

Second, K’nex relies on a narrow range of pieces to achieve a great amount of freedom of design. This makes construction easy, as you don’t need to search for a specific piece at each stage of building. In contrast Lego kits come with highly specialized pieces, encouraging kids to stick to the models the pieces were made for, therefore limiting freedom. The diversity of pieces also makes building with Legos less of a “building” process and more of a “finding” process as you search for the pieces appropriate to your project.

Popularity:

Both K’nex and Legos are very popular. Both are sold in almost every toy store across the country, both are featured in large exhibits in malls (see the rocket in R3), both make lots of money. Comparing the popularity of the two is just nitpicking the sales stats, something which is not informative of the quality of the toy and obfuscates the true merits of both Legos and K’nex.

Legoland:

a) The Resolution clearly is focused on comparing Legos and K’nex toys, hence the specific inclusion of the word “toy” in the definition. Con is trying to slide by on a weak semantic argument. Con’s interpretation of the resolution would allow us to include anything tangentially associated with Lego’s; we could wind up arguing about which company has a cooler office under his interpretation.

b) If Legoland is not owned or operated by Lego, then it is not produced by Lego and so it not a Lego product. Legoland is not a Lego product and so is not relevant.

Conclusion:

I have shown that K’nex are superior to Legos on the grounds of usability, education, and ethics, therefore affirming the resolution that K’nex are better than Legos.

PartamRuhem

Con

Throughout the debate, my opponent has revolved his case around the premise that children are attentive, well developed beings, capable and willing to learn and master very complex concepts. I am NOT stating in any way that children are dumb, but I am simply pointing out the very obvious fact that children are impulsive in nature; my opponent agrees, calling kids "curious". It's almost instinct for them to always be seeking something new, something more direct. Something that will keep their short attentions focused. That something is Legos.

I also view toys as engaging, but the concepts behind the toy MUST be engaging as well. Engineering, no matter how my opponent tries to sugar coat it, is NOT inspiring to kids. You can't just argue since you found a youtube video with a kid enjoying K'nex and explaining the engineering behind it that ALL kids do this. I can find a video of a giant African American woman sitting on the toilet, repeatedly stating that she is in fact sitting on the toilet. It has millions of views. Do all obese African American women sit on toilets and sing about it? NO. Some do, I am sure. Just like some kids love the engineering aspect of K'nex. But this doesn't reflect the majority. I, on the other hand, have shown Legos to grab the attention of MILLIONS of kids through my statistics.

Cultural Appropriation
I have not responded to this, for I ran out of character throughout the rounds, and won't respond now, so as to keep the debate fair. Though I don't see this as a large factor at all in this debate (why I decided to spend characters addressing more important issues), seeing as one brand of Lego toy tried to exhibit the Maori culture in a positive way. But it's up to the judges to decide how BIG of a factor that will actually play out in the voting.

Engineering Education
My opponent misrepresents my position on a child's mental abilities. He seems to think I stated they are unmotivated and dumb, two things I never stated. Children are extremely motivated, to the point where they don't have a large attention span. All the readers can agree that children don't necessarily want to focus on something that requires a lot of analyzing and exactness. This links in with my popularity facts, showing how Legos keep kids interested.

On top of this, my opponent thought that bringing out a rebuttal to my source in this last round was appropriate, while I cannot do so to the Maori argument. His civil engineering argument SHOULD be discarded entirely. However, I will still address it. Though I find a conduct loss appropriate.

First, my opponent doesn't correlate this growth in civil engineers with K'nex. Therefore, we can assume another variable is the reason for this uprising in the most popular engineering category. In fact, there IS another variable. PRO conveniently leaves out the next statement in regards to this growth in civil engineers. It states: "Spurred by general population growth...more civil engineers will be needed to design and construct or expand transportation, water supply, and pollution control systems, and buildings and building complexes." There is no link between K'nex and this growth, rather it is due to the populace increase. K'nex have been around for 15 years, yet no signs of engineering growth within that 15 years is produced by my opponent.

Therefore, there is no engineering advantage, just my opponent's false wishes due to his own bias.

The same basic understanding of engineering can be said of Legos. If anything, Legos are MORE embracing to children, thus giving the kids MORE of an education in simple structures, while K'nex don't attract enough kids to do so. It's the burden of Pro to show how popular K'nex are, and he failed to do so. HE shows pictures and youtube videos, but again, this is not evidence, while I have shown numbers that cannot be mistaken. 5 billion hours a year is no joke.

Usability
My opponent again fails to realize the Legos and K'nex are EQUAL in this department. He concedes MULTIPLE TIMES that Legos have the ability to make movable structures, just that "It requires rare special connector pieces"....these are pieces you can dig out of any giant toy stores Lego bin, pieces you can find at your friends house. There is no proof that these pieces are unable to be obtained. Rather, they are easily accessible by the user.

PRO then states that K'nex relies on less pieces. Less pieces means less you can do with them. I understand that the system K'nex uses offer a small amount of pieces that can be adapted to create a large amount of simple structures, but what Legos does is creates a VAST amount of pieces, so you can create SPECIFIC structures. If you want a castle with ballistic siege equipment next to burning torches and flags, firing down upon Lego men in full armor riding horses next to realistic looking Lego rocks and swamps, then YOU CAN DO THAT. This is HIGHLY entertaining for children, while building even a simple K'nex bridge is more involved and less rewarding for the average child.

Popularity
This has been mostly addressed in my other arguments this round. There is NO evidence supporting an equal amount of popularity within Legos and K'nex, but a larger amount of support for Lego. This point can be considered by judges to counter-act the Maori argument, and then some.

LegoLand
a) What Pro doesn't realize is that most of LegoLand IS Legos. Lego toys. Therefore, LegoLand is a toy product of Lego.
b) LegoLand was created by Lego. It's simple business that involved Merlin Entertainment with LegoLand. It's a TRADEMARK of Lego, meaning it's a product of Lego.

CONCLUSION
I have shown how Legos reach out to more children and create an economic advantage. I have also refuted the engineering argument. Therefore, I have shown Lego to be more advantageous and effective on multiple levels, while being equal with K'nex on other levels.

Thank you. Vote Con
Debate Round No. 4
22 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by F-16_Fighting_Falcon 4 years ago
F-16_Fighting_Falcon
I really liked reading this debate. It was a debate of style vs substance. Raisor had great style and totally convinced me that K'nex was awesome. If I am going to buy one of them as a present for younger siblings/cousins, I would definitely choose K'nex. Important points were the versatility and the number of different things you can build from just one set of K'nex. Partam never really refuted that. Raisor's picture showing the bizarre pieces of Lego's was very compelling. Partam simply took issue with the word "bizzare" without refuting the underlying implication that bizarre means that there are limited options to what you can do with it where as the options with Knex are vast. On the technicality of the resolution though, Partam does enough to show that Lego's sell better, and are more popular among kids. Raisor's sand argument in response was weak. I don't really know who I would have voted for, but I enjoyed reading this debate quite a bit. Well done.
Posted by RoyLatham 5 years ago
RoyLatham
I thought Pro won the educational argument, but Con had ease of use. the problem is in knowing what's "better" in a toy. How about circular slide rules as toys? Kids could learn logarithms. While on many subjects popularity doesn't weigh against merit, the nature of toys is their play value and popularity measures that. I'm sure advertising budget and other things matter as well, but it's the best measure available. Does this prove that popular music is the "best" music? I'd say it does if the popularity endures. Lego and Beethoven have endured.

Tinkertoys http://en.wikipedia.org... seem to be the precursor of the K'nex product. As an engineer-type child, I liked them better than Legos.

The cultural appropriation argument didn't stand on it's own because there was no evidence that use of the names did any actual harm. It probably does some good by raising awareness of a culture unfamiliar to many Westerners. Disney has a Hawaiian-culture-themed cartoon that's probably a net plus.
Posted by Chthonian 5 years ago
Chthonian
Pro does a great job presenting why K'nex are better from an engineering point of view, and Con does an excellent job establishing his position about Legos from an efficiency point of view.

This was a very close debate, but in my opinion Con does a better job demonstrating why Legos are better for kids. It is also unclear if some of the more impressive images Pro provides were even relevant to this debate because it is unknown if the builders were in fact kids. I also think Pro misrepresented Con's view by suggesting that Con thinks kids are "lazy" and "unintelligent"; words that were never used or implied.

Debate goes to Con.
Posted by PartamRuhem 5 years ago
PartamRuhem
@MasterKage: I had indeed pointed out how Legos were MORE popular; it wasn't my burden to show what level of popularity K'nex held. I showed statistics on Legos popularity, and stated in my R4 how my opponent had not properly addressed popularity. He hadn't posted a single thing on it.
Posted by MasterKage 5 years ago
MasterKage
RFD:
Conduct: No conduct violations, and this is not to be judged on.

S/G: Countering THE_OPINIONATOR's vote on S/G. It was asked not to judge on S/G.

Arguments: Pro (Raisor) showed how K'nex have more ease of use and how they can increase children's potency for engineer knowledge.
One thing that Con could have showed is how K'nex is less well known than Lego's, because before this debate, I had no idea what K'nex was.

Sources: Tied.
Posted by PartamRuhem 5 years ago
PartamRuhem
@Rocky....the debate had nothing to really do with higher quality. I defined better as more advantageous and effective....your RFD is very vague and smells of votebombing
Posted by PartamRuhem 5 years ago
PartamRuhem
Yeah, I get that I should have used more pics....but two points? Just for pictures? That means you could have not said a single thing of relevance, just posted pics, and we would be at 6-9.....still stupid, you have to admit.

And I guess I was being a little over the top with the conduct thing....I just take all info pulled from webs as a new argument, something not allowed in the last round. It also supports your case, so I thought of it as more beneficial for your case then as a refutation. So it would be a fairness voter.

But in any event, I'm over it. Haha. I just wish you wouldn't get so many points for pictures! I would have posted more, but I didn't want to take up room.....and I don't really know how. A bunch of HTML bull.
Posted by Raisor 5 years ago
Raisor
Lol you should have used pics. If there was ever a debate that called for it this was it.

And it isnt new evidence if Im using your own source to show your claim isnt supported. Under your interpretation of "new argument" there would be no way for me to respond to any new arguments you bring up in R3.

My R4 move was totally legit- it was a response to a recent argument using evidence already in play in round and with time for you to respond to it. If you were going to argue that theory in a competitive round, how would you run the voter? Theres no abuse, no fairness issues- absolutely no reason to discount the argument.
Posted by PartamRuhem 5 years ago
PartamRuhem
GOD DAMN IT. He had pictures so he gets points.....that is the most retarded thing I have ever heard! Almost ALL of his points are from his pictures. This is insane....
Posted by PartamRuhem 5 years ago
PartamRuhem
When you quote new information, it's a new argument. Because you are using new evidence. You can't do that in the last round. A counter argument involving new facts counts as a new argument, while one that doesn't is the route you should have taken.

It would have been more appropriate to simply respond to the quote I used WITHOUT pulling more info.
15 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by royalpaladin 5 years ago
royalpaladin
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: Con wins the usability based on his "pieces" turn. I also thought that Raisor's sources were not as impressive as Partam's.
Vote Placed by Wallstreetatheist 5 years ago
Wallstreetatheist
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro exploited the overall better versitility of the K'nex.
Vote Placed by Lickdafoot 5 years ago
Lickdafoot
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:23 
Reasons for voting decision: Legos and Knex both offer different types of versatility. Pros strongest point was that knex inspire creativity and problem solving. Cons strongest point was that legos are more accessible (easier) and therefore more popular with children. I believe Pro argued his case very well, but ultimately did not prove that Knex were any better than legos. Con wins arguments on the technicality of the resolution. Sources to Pro for having more to do with the toys than the marketing aspects of the toys.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 5 years ago
RoyLatham
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: The question is what are the most important factors in judging a toy "better" ad how do we know what is important. I think Pro won the educational content factor, and Con won ease of use. The cultural appropriation argument was not prima facie; there was no showing that the Lego product in fact promoted disrespect, only that some purists objected. So what's important for a "better" toy? Sales measures popularity, so that's a measure of what toy buyers think is better. That's the best data.
Vote Placed by thett3 5 years ago
thett3
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:61 
Reasons for voting decision: Counter to lannan
Vote Placed by lannan13 5 years ago
lannan13
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:16 
Reasons for voting decision: I agree with laztheloser
Vote Placed by nerdykiller 5 years ago
nerdykiller
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:00 
Reasons for voting decision: even
Vote Placed by Chthonian 5 years ago
Chthonian
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Comments.
Vote Placed by larztheloser 5 years ago
larztheloser
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro had BOP to prove K'nex are superior. Pro showed K'nex teaches kids engineering and can do some stuff easily legos find hard. Con showed lego is culturally beneficial and more versatile, as well as easier to master (pro should not have conceeded this). I was convinced that some children would prefer LEGOs, while others would prefer K'nex. If I am to assume children are who this debate is about, Pro thus fails his BOP. Con needs to work on rebuttal, instead of legoland which wasn't important.
Vote Placed by MasterKage 5 years ago
MasterKage
RaisorPartamRuhemTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:31 
Reasons for voting decision: Comments.