Tag Archives: robotics

Apollo brings full automation to ADT’s commercial offerings @ CES 2023



ADT Commercial Apollo security robotIt seems like every day we hear about another industry that AI, robotics, and automation are coming to improve. Fast food service has gotten better with more automation in the kitchen. Manufacturing has been helped immensely by robotics and automation, making the jobs in factories safer and less physically intensive. However, one place that we didn’t expect to see robotics, at least not today, is security. However, ADT Commercial has a new robot security guard called Apollo.

What is Apollo?

Apollo is a humanoid robot that is intended to augment traditional security guards in an office, retail space, or any other commercial property. It is part of the company’s new EvoGuard initiative, which seeks to infuse high-tech capabilities into ADT’s commercial security offerings.

A large part of a human security guard’s job is to observe their surroundings and report on what they see. This can be done by walking the premises and looking for things that are out of place, or by sitting with a wall of screens watching an entire property at once. If something out of the ordinary is observed, the correct people are alerted. This could be another member of security, the property owner, or even the police.

Apollo is capable of doing all of this, without any of the restrictions of a person. The robot can travel around a property easily looking for changes in the environment, or even recognizable issues. Once an issue is recognized, it can report back to a security supervisor and a human can take over control of the robot to go and investigate further. If warranted, the agent can then notify someone on the grounds, the property owner, or the local police.

One of the interesting features of Apollo is the virtual reality option. Using a VR headset, the supervisor is able to essentially become the robot. They are able to see through the perspective of the robot and manipulate it as if they were there. This includes moving its hands, opening or closing doors, checking windows, etc. However, if the supervisor is unable or unwilling to use the VR experience, the entire thing can also be controlled from the system’s computer-based dashboard.

This is actually the reason why Apollo is humanoid. If the purpose was merely to observe and report, then it could have been designed to look like a trash can. However, because it is intended to be able to be used remotely to accomplish goals, the company let it was important to make it with a wider range of motion. But, since all of our environments are designed for humans, it was decided that Apollo should be humanoid, as well.

Summary

Apollo is currently in use through partnerships with three test partners. Using their feedback, the company and its design partner are able to make adjustments before it becomes available for a wider audience, hopefully during quarter 1 of 2023. To learn more about Apollo or ADT’s other commercial security offerings, you can check out their website.

Interview by Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.

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Ball Wave gives robots and computers the ability to smell @ CES 2023



Ball Wave Machine Smell DetectorComputers and machinery have gained a lot of abilities over the past few years. Computers can think for themselves with artificial intelligence. Robots can see and hear thanks to cameras and microphones. Together they create the ability for machines to make decisions about their environment and adapt. But, one thing that’s missing is the sense of smell. That’s where Ball Wave technology comes in.

What is Ball Wave and how does it work?

Ball Wave is a remarkable new technology that has the potential to revolutionize the way we use technology. It allows a machine to essentially be able to smell the air around it. But, more importantly, it allows for an integrated laboratory to analyze the air in near real-time.

This technology takes what is traditionally a very large piece of equipment and shrinks it down to a very small package. What was once the size of an air conditioner is now able to be held in the hand. This means that there are a lot of opportunities that were never available before.

But the real beauty is the integrated computer that allows you to get analysis results immediately. You can tell within seconds if there are any irregularities in the air. This can be used for safety purposes or even for monitoring the quality or process of making wine.

How can Ball Wave technology be used?

The impressive part of the technology is that, because of its size, it can be used in a large number of applications. One of the most surprising is that it is small and light enough to be placed on a drone. In fact, the company has an example video on its website showing the box in action on a drone. In addition to being just plain cool, it also has a lot of benefits. The device can be used to test air quality in areas that are not easily reachable, such as during building construction or demolition.

Another interesting usage is in the alcohol industry. The company has piloted using the box to keep track of the production process for sake, a popular drink in Japan. Because of the way the system works, it is able to monitor the fermentation process and know where the sake is in its production. The next stage is to integrate AI into the system to be able to even determine brand from the scent.

Of course, the concept isn’t limited to sake. In fact, it could easily be adapted to keep an eye on wine or beer. Production of these drinks has a lot of potential problems in production, so being able to track the progress can prevent wine turning to vinegar.

Summary

The Ball Wave technology is already in use in Japan, with an expansion of markets planned. The technology has many uses inside and outside of laboratory purposes. To learn more about Ball Wave or to find out how you might be able to use it, head over to the company’s website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.

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The Tactigon wants to ease your computer interactions @ CES 2023



The Tactigon Gesture & Motion ControllerThe way we interact with machines has not changed much over the years. We started with a keyboard and later added a mouse. The mouse was augmented by touch, but only for some purposes. All of this means that the way we use computers today is nearly identical to how we interacted with them 40 years ago. However, the types of machines we interact with have changed significantly, and so it is time that our interactions change too. This is the lofty goal that The Tactigon has in its gesture-based controls.

What is The Tactigon?

The Tactigon is a unique and intriguing gadget. It is a board no bigger than a credit card, equipped with sensors and customizable inputs that allow it to turn any ordinary object into an interactive device with the help of app integration. With no wiring or any particular specific setup, The device seamlessly connects with apps already installed on the user’s mobile device and allows them to integrate the power of motion into their daily computing lives.

What is The Tactigon?

The Tactigon is a unique and intriguing gadget. It is a board no bigger than a credit card, equipped with sensors and customizable inputs that allow it to turn any ordinary object into an interactive device with the help of app integration. The device, when integrated, allows users to interact with their computers or devices without having to touch them.

In addition to the development board, The Tactigon has a fully functional end product called the Tactigon Skin. The controller is held in the hand and allows for simple controls as well as more advanced gestures. Depending on the integrated application, the controls can do different things.

How does The Tactigon change how we use computers?

The Tactigon Skin uses an artificial intelligence algorithm to recognize gestures and accurately interpret them. This allows users to interact with their computers or devices in ways never seen before, like moving objects on the screen in certain directions or performing complex tasks at once in a single gesture. The company’s precision makes it ideal for sophisticated applications that require fine control over the user’s movements.

Furthermore, the product allows you to access digital content with a simple flick of the wrist or turn a page in an ebook in one swift gesture. The Tactigon Skin has been designed to be highly responsive and accurate, ensuring seamless interactions between user and machine so that users can work more efficiently without having to strain their hands.

How does The Tactigon change how we interact with robots?

The Tactigon Skin is not just limited to controlling digital devices but can also be used to control robots and other physical objects. Its accurate gesture recognition allows for precise commands to be sent, allowing for a fluid connection between user and machine. This means that users can make their robots move or perform tasks with a simple flick of a wrist. The controller is also compatible with a range of robots and machines, meaning that it can be used in combination with all kinds of different projects.

The Tactigon Skin is truly revolutionary, changing the way we interact with computers and robots. With its integrated sensors and Artificial Intelligence algorithm, the device offers the best possible data available and helps users to control their machines with smooth and accurate movements. The controller is a man-machine interface that brings the digital world to your fingertips.

Summary

The Tactigon Skin is revolutionizing how we interact with our machines, allowing us to use them in ways never seen before. It is a leap into the future of man-machine interaction and promises to make interacting with our computer more natural and intuitive than ever before. The Tactigon Skin allows us to access digital content quickly and accurately, making it easier to focus on the job at hand.

To learn more about The Tactigon, check out the company’s website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Dog-E is the robotic companion you’ve been waiting for @ CES 2023



Dog-E by WowWeeIf you’ve been in the electronics world for a while, you know that robotic pets have been a popular product category for a long time. However, they generally come with some problems. Generally, they are too expensive, don’t do anything actually interesting, or both. One company has tried to tackle this problem for years and has hit upon a robotic companion that people will want – Dog-E from WowWee.

Who is WowWee?

WowWee has been around for a decade and is dedicated to creating unique robotic toys. The company is best known for the Roboraptor and Robosapien, which have both become iconic toys. These products created a new product category for kids and families, with the ability to interact with the robots and, in some instances, do some basic programming. However, the skill sets were still fairly limited, so, while popular, the devices remained niche.

What Is Dog-E?

Dog-E is a unique robotic pet that comes with a variety of personalities and temperaments for you to choose from. From the moment you begin interacting with your companion, it mints a unique personality just for you. And, as you continue to interact with it, the personality is revealed in bigger and more obvious ways. For example, the eyes might light up a particular color early on to indicate a certain characteristic. In addition, Dog-E’s tail has the ability to show personality traits through LED-powered icons.

However, if you would prefer to customize your companion, as opposed to using the one minted for you, you have the ability to change characteristics through the companion mobile app. Whether you’re looking for a licky & loving dog or one that’s protective & hungry – Dog-E has it all! It also features artificial intelligence so it can learn how to respond better to your commands the more it interacts with you. Plus, its adorable appearance makes it an irresistible companion.

Interaction With Dog-E

The best part of having a robot pet is that you get to watch as it develops its own unique personality and interacts with you in different ways. Dog-E comes equipped with a variety of sensors that help it interact with you, including touch sensors to detect when it’s being touched, infrared vision to bounce light off objects, and an array of microphones to pick up sounds. Once it starts interacting with you, Dog-E can become playful & energetic or sweet & lazy depending on your interaction style.

Summary

Dog-E is the perfect robotic companion for anyone looking for a pet that is both fun and interactive. With its customizable personalities and artificial intelligence, this product has something for everyone! Whether you’re looking for a licky & loving friend or one that’s protective & hungry – Dog-E has it all. Plus, its adorable appearance makes it an irresistible companion that you’ll love interacting with!

Dog-E is expected to come onto the market just in time for Holiday 2023 and will retail for $79.99. To learn more about Dog-E or pre-order your own robotic companion, you can head over to the product page.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Ottonomy robots deliver food, groceries, and packages @ CES 2022



Ottonomy delivery robotsOver the past few years, the idea of getting things – anything – delivered directly to your door has grown in popularity. The internet has given us access to goods and services all over the world, while the change in environment has made many of us stay in the house much of the time. To address this altered reality, Ottonomy has developed an exciting line of autonomous robots that can deliver nearly anything straight to your home or office.

Who is Ottonomy?

Ottonomy, the company behind the world’s first autonomous delivery robots, is quickly gaining notoriety in the robotics industry. Its robots are designed to help navigate businesses with staffing shortages for retail and restaurant industries. Their fully autonomous robots can deliver food & beverages, groceries, and packages to curbside, last mile, and even indoor environments. These robots are available on a “RaaS” (Robotics as a Service) model. Their business customers get access to a quicker, safer, and more economical delivery option as compared to traditional 3rd party delivery services. Above all these robots are set to reduce carbon emissions and improve quality of life.

Ottonomy’s delivery robots

The Ottonomy robots are designed to deliver food, groceries, packages, and other items directly to a customer’s home or office. They have three different robot models – the Ottobot (footprint is slightly smaller than an SUV), Ottobot Mini (for indoor deliveries), and Ottobox (a refrigerated version). The Ottobots have been tested at several locations in Canada including the Toronto Zoo, University of Waterloo, and McMaster Innovation Park. Over 15K pounds of goods have been delivered by Ottonomy robots in Ontario alone.

While this particular concept may not be new for some companies – Starship Technologies offers delivery bots that can carry up to 20lbs – few others have managed to actually put their robots into operation. Ottonomy is looking to change that by doing things a bit differently. Ottonomy has taken the time to develop relationships with local businesses in Ontario, Canada as well as with government leaders and regulators. The Ottobots are also great for shorter distances, so they can operate within smaller cities where similar delivery services aren’t currently available or viable due to lack of business density and high overhead costs from full-time employees.

How is Ottonomy different?

Ottonomy partners directly with retailers & restaurants while others work more on the “last mile” segment (i.e., delivering goods from UPS). Restaurants, in particular, have been quick to adopt Ottobots because of the lack of staff during off-peak hours. For example, Ottnomoy has partnered with CVG Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio. Their robots roam the airport autonomously and will stop wherever guests have placed an order to deliver a hot beverage or a meal.

Summary

The Ottobots are currently being piloted at various locations in Canada and CVG Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio, with plans for global expansion soon. If you’re interested in learning more about Ottonomy or want to see the Ottbots in action, be sure to check out their website.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

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Autoslide makes any sliding glass door autonomous @ CES 2021



Autoslide autonomous sliding glass doorIf you have a pet dog and a sliding door, you likely have to stop what you’re doing and go open that door a dozen times a day to let the dog in and out. If you have a multi-level home, it can be even more of an inconvenience, especially now that many of us are working from home. This, and a number of other issues, is what Autoslide is designed to solve.

This system is a retrofit device that makes any sliding door into an autonomous sliding door. Using motion sensors, the door can be set to open when someone comes near it. This could be good for opening when you’re carrying supplies out to the grill or just when you’re entertaining. It could even be used at restaurants and bars to keep air conditioning inside while maintaining the feel of an outside experience. By using NFC tags, it could be great for letting the dog out.

Another great use case for the Autoslide is for people in wheelchairs or walkers. Obviously, the weight and length of a sliding glass door can make it difficult to open or close in this situation. Being able to automate the door, either by motion-sensing or by button, could be a life-changer in one of these homes.

Truly, the aspect that makes this system unique is that it does not require you to replace your door. Instead, it fits onto the existing door and track. This retrofit capability reduces the cost significantly, as you don’t have to have a contractor knock out the existing door and install a new one. It also means that you might be able to install it yourself.

The Autoslide system, in various configurations for motion, NFC, manual button, etc., are all available from the company. To learn more or make a purchase, head over to what the website.

Interview by Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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RoadPrintz makes roadwork safer and less expensive @ CES 2021



RoadPrintz robotic road painterThere are some aspects of daily life that very few people actually know how they work. One area that we know very little about is roadways. People are often shocked to see just how big traffic lights and road signs actually are. They would also be amazed to learn just how the painting of symbols on the road actually happens. These giant symbols, such as “right turn only” or “school zone,” are hand-painted, or painted using giant stencils. This realization was so surprising for Sam Bell that he founded RoadPrintz.

RoadPrintz is a company that is dedicated to automating the process of printing on the road. Bell was involved in a multi-million dollar project and was shocked to discover that certain road printing projects would not be undertaken because of the cost. The cost was not just in the initial implementation but in upkeep. It turns out that these have to be repainted annually, making it an eternal cost.

Once he began to investigate, he discovered that a large portion of the price was because at least five people are involved in the painting process, including those who control traffic, drop stencils, and paint. The process takes time, leaving these people in the middle of the street. This could be dangerous for them as well as motorists. Since lines are painted autonomously, why not symbols, as well?

That was the question that was answered by RoadPrintz – it absolutely can be. Using and training a robotic arm, the company was able to completely print road symbols quicker, cheaper, and safer than normal. This new process is a win for everyone involved. The intention is for cities to be able to purchase these robotic arms and use them to create and maintain their roads.

The product is currently in a testing phase, with hopes to bring it to market for cities and municipalities in the near future. For more information on the company, check out their website.

Interview by Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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iWONDERCOOK takes the hassle out of preparing a fresh meal @ CES 2021



After a long day at work, whether you’re working from the office or working from home, sometimes the energy or interest to cook dinner can be limited. For some, it means going and getting fast food. For others, it means jumping on an app and ordering delivery. But, if you are lucky enough to have an iWONDERCOOK, you don’t have to have fast food or order out, and you don’t have to expend the energy to cook.

iWONDERCOOK is a small robotic chef that is designed for your personal kitchen. It is about the size of a consumer 3D printer and even follows similar principles. The design of the meal is done beforehand, and the required materials are prepared and shipped to your house. To cook the pre-packed but not prepared meal, you scan the barcode on the package and place the ingredients in the machine. Then, in about 15 minutes, return to the machine and plate your food. That’s all there is to it. In fact, during the conversation, Michael Lemberg cooked and plated a meal on camera.

The way it works behind the scenes is similar to some of the meal kits, but with an easy and robotic twist. The company sources the ingredients to support the recipes in its system. They then clean, cut, and pack those ingredients into containers, split by meal. They ship those packets to you, which contains the general ingredients, sauces, and spices. So far, a tried and true model. The difference, of course, is that you don’t need a printed recipe with preparation and cooking processes. Instead, just scan, cook, and walk away. You don’t even have to deal with cleanup, as the machine takes care of that (except for your plate and silverware).

Because of delivery requirements, iWONDERCOOK is currently limited to the New York area. If you are interested in learning more about the product, check out the website.

Interview by Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.

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RoboEatz ARK 3 automates the kitchen of a restaurant @ CES 2021



RoboEatz robotic kitchenFor small restaurants around the world, like most businesses, one of the largest costs is payroll. The real problem for restaurants is that margins are usually razor thin. Over the past few years, many restaurants, especially here in the United States, have been looking at what can be done to reduce payroll costs. Many fast food and chain restaurants have added ordering kiosks and at-table computers. However, the place that could really reduce cost is in the kitchen. In addition to the cost of labor, there is also food waste. RoboEatz has developed a robot that can help with both of these issues – the ARK 3.

The RoboEatz ARK 3 is a full kitchen automation system that can replace the kitchen staff and equipment of almost any restaurant. It takes up only 200 square feet and can serve 1000 meals without needing to be replenished. That replenishment process is also easy, as the system is able to use its sensors to determine when supplies are needed and place the order itself.

The first concern of any restaurant owner is the ability to maintain their menu and customer relationship. Implementing new technology that ruins your brand image is not going to be a win. ARK 3 allows you to create and fully customize your recipes, meaning you can keep your food exactly as it is. Even better, through the system’s mobile app, customers and servers can easily adjust their order, including ordering partial portions.

On top of the cooking process, ARK 3 also takes care of all of the cleanup. In fact, the process takes place between each and every order, eliminating cross contamination. This means that it can prepare and cook regular dishes and vegan dishes without any issues.

The company is currently working to build a prototype restaurant to show off the robot, while also working with other restaurants to implement the technology in the future. For more information on the ARK 3, check out the company’s website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.

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Actasys gives your vehicle and its sensors 20/20 vision @ CES 2021



ActaJet by ActasysVehicles these days are extremely sophisticated with intricate computer systems. They have many sensors used for everything from outside temperature to automated braking. Because these sensors are generally exposed to the elements, they eventually need to be cleaned. Unfortunately, many are too sensitive to come in contact with, while others are not easily accessible. Even worse, what happens if they get dirty while you’re on the road? Actasys has developed a technology to autonomously keep the sensors clean and functioning.

The company’s technology, which is called ActaJet, is a unique sensor cleaning system. It uses small focused jets of air to keep the lenses and covers clear of dirt and debris. This is done by a series of small actuators, which means there is no need for fans, pumps, or compressors. This ensures optimal operation of the sensors and cameras in all environments and weather conditions.

Imagine driving down the interstate following a large truck. The truck hits a puddle, spraying mud and water all over your car. You can clean your windshield with the wipers so you can see again, but your car doesn’t have the same ability. Suddenly your automatic braking system, lane guidance, and tailgating alarm stop working. That’s why ActaJet was created.

Actasys focuses its attention on working with the sensor builders and OEMs, meaning that the vehicle manufacturers don’t have to do anything special to incorporate the technology. Because ActaJet is designed in a cartridge, all that is need is a single power wire instead of tubes or valves. The ease of implementation is a core aspect for wider adoption. Being an electronic device, one of the concerns is always power consumption. The system draws less than 10 watts of power and as low as one. This reduces the potential drain on the battery.

For more information go to the website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.

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