From line following to autonomous robots.
Look how far have we come in robotics. Line following robots have been invented more than 50 years ago and we are still teaching students robotics with line following features. We’ve made leaps and bounds since then, with emerging new technologies such as using QR codes for locating purposes. Even then that ability has been around for years. For example, Amazon warehouses have used Kiva Robots since 2012. These robots use QR codes to sense their location.
Speaking of Amazon, just last week they announced its first fully autonomous mobile robot called Proteus.
These robots move large carts throughout their warehouses and can safely navigate around human employees, unlike some of their past robots that are kept separated in a caged area. When Proteus detects a human within its sensing beam, the robot stops moving, then resumes after the person moves away.
With new robot technology comes potential labor concerns. Amazon explicitly told Forbes that “replacing people with machines is just a fallacy” that could lead to a company going out of business. This is to say that robots could play a role in setting a pace of work that humans struggle to safely keep up with, something we’ve already seen happen at the company with automated management systems.
Robots are increasingly working in close proximity to humans, and finding ways to maximize human-machine teamwork could help companies boost productivity. Rather than viewing it as robots replacing people, perhaps this will lead to new kinds of jobs instead.
Kai’s Clan is using the same technology with their robots, which shows us very accurate coordinations of where they are on any of the smart AR/VR Adventure mats. The benefit of knowing exactly where the robot is on the mat allowed us to create corresponding robot avatars in Minecraft and Tinkercad. This in turn lets students to create and design their own avatars and see them come alive in augmented and virtual reality.
This is similar to how we use Google Maps in our daily lifes, which gives us the exact location of where we are. While obviously, we don’t have the roads full of QR markers like Kai’s Clan the concept is similar. We use computer vision, while Google uses satellite projections.
With Kai’s Education’s new Hybrid robot, KaiBot in Kainundrum we took it a step further. You can locate the exact position of the robot once it’s paired with the virtual world. How do we do it? Well, we call it our magic dust from New Zealand. And this magic dust lets you code your robot to compete in maze races, and create escape rooms all in Blockly and Python using the exact location of your robot.