There is a new hardware prototyping platform out called TinkerForge. It looks like they are trying to create an Arduino-like development platform that is easier to use. You build things out of special function 4x4cm bricks and bricklets (parts that connect to the bricks). The hardware components snap together and software allows you to perform basic functions without even programming. However, if you do want to program it supports C, C++, C#, Java and Python. Before you knowThis looks like it might be a fun new platform.