Arduino is an open-source physical computing platform based on a simple I/O board and a development environment that implements the Processing/Wiring language. Arduino can be used to develop stand-alone interactive objects or can be connected to software on your computer (e.g. Flash, Processing, MaxMSP). The open-source IDE can be downloaded for free (currently for Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux).
This is the new Arduino Uno. In addition to all the features of the previous board, the Uno now uses an ATmega8U2 instead of the FTDI chip. This allows for faster transfer rates, no drivers needed for Linux or Mac (inf file for Windows is needed), and the ability to have the Uno show up as a keyboard, mouse, joystick, etc.