We build our own robot – 4eyes goes Industry 4.0
You arrive at the office, open the door and haven’t taken off your jacket yet, when our robo-barista greets you with a freshly brewed coffee. He takes your jacket, informs you about changes in your agenda and about a cancelled train connection in the afternoon. As soon as you’re sitting at your desk, he brings you mineral water and your still-warm croissant.
We are not quite there yet. These are the scenarios that we have imagined for our robot as a team. These ideas motivate us enormously, because we are currently working on such a robot.
After the components and all the electronics arrive, we spend the lunch breaks building our robot. Michael and Andi’s experience in 3D printing, CAD design and drone construction help us. Building and flying drones is a hobby the two have been pursuing for some time. You can see what this looks like here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzbkWRVnAi, little heads up, this is not for the faint of heart.
A DIY project like this in a team is fun and you learn a lot. But there is more to it than just “occupational therapy”: We want to make digitization a reality together with local SMEs, especially in the industrial sector. Co-Creating positive impact.
Not just talking about it, but doing it. How do you tackle new topics? By trying something out, making mistakes, trying again and learning and developing in the process.
We want to understand how machines are controlled, gain concrete experience with the programming, application and networking of the various devices, tools and systems. How we can contribute to making the so-called “Industry 4.0” a reality together with your SME.
On our learning journey, we visited the Swiss Smart Factory in the Innovation Park in Biel. There you can see that behind all the buzzwords – from augmented reality to cooperative robotics – there are real products and services. In concrete terms, you can get an impression of how a smart factory can be created if the devices are properly networked with each other and with ERP, MES, etc. And not in some distant future, but already today!
This visit finally awakened the enthusiasm in everyone in the 4eyes team and confirmed us in our plan. The idea of building our own robot and, above all, programming it – so we started to implement it.
In our search for possible projects, we went from completely self-printed material to the AR3 from https://www.anninrobotics.com/. This open-source robotic arm is a project by Chris Annin, a professional robotics engineer. His goal is to develop a low-cost robot that you can assemble yourself at home (or in the office).
After a few lunch breaks and after-work screwdriving sessions, we have come a long way with our robot. At the moment, we are taking care of the control electronics and the wiring. And soon we will start programming so that our new team colleague will really make us a freshly brewed coffee soon.
Are you interested in what we do or do you just feel like having a coffee? Just drop by! Until the robot takes over, we’ll be happy to make the coffee for you personally.