A robotic arm made by the wonderful rapid prototyping process sounds truly next generation. To produce amazing VR applications through the collision of virtual and real worlds was the inspiration behind creating this robot arm by 219 Design. 219 Design is an engineering company which is a Silicon Valley product consisting of Stanford graduates. This amazing company created the robotic arm using rapid prototyping, open-source electronics, and a very shrewd interface. An HTC Vive headset will be used to control this robotic arm.
Until the announcement of this ingenious product, rapid prototyping had very little to do with virtual reality. So naturally when the concept of this product was announced people were very baffled and curious on how this product will work. But over the course of the last few years, we have seen that VR goggles can actually function as an amazing designing tool for objects which can be printed through rapid prototyping.
Using a VR headset to control a robotic arm
Keeping this in mind the genius minds from 219 Design took this to the next level. They brought the two technologies together which is as amazing as it sounds. Their production of the robotic arm made by rapid prototyping and open-source electronics which can be controlled through VR hardware is in its truest sense ground-breaking. This amazing piece of scientific creation very distinctly shows us the inseparable bond that remains between rapid prototyping and digital systems like VR.
Over the course of the last few years, 219 Design has solidified their place as innovative product developers. Through their works, they have crossed paths with interactive virtual reality technology quite brilliantly and made a VR evaluation app. After the brilliant success of the VR app they thought on how they could they could take this piece of technology to the next level and mitigate the gap between real and virtual world. After looking at the available technologies and the needs of their clients whom they provided with innovative products, they developed a brand new tool.
This brilliant tool allows us to take charge of a real world device through a virtual reality interface. As explained by the researchers of this company, the idea of this project of the robotic arm, in fact, came out of the mind of a summer intern.
This particular summer intern had a keen interest on working with robotics. Seeing this, the masterminds of this company decided to come up with a project where the intern could work in a short amount of time. Though this was just a tiny step at first, it later began to gather momentum and turned into a project where they could take a human being to virtual reality and then bring him back to the real world. Later on, this idea and the project turned out to be the project which gave them the robotic arm which can be controlled through the virtual reality app they created and also an HTC Vive headset.
The system to build this product was fairly simple due to the 3D printing tools this company owned. They also relied greatly on factors like MATLAB simulation, mathematical modeling and computer aided design.
This product is not only considered amazing only because of the wonderful service it provides, it is more than that. This product shows us the way for more applications on this concept. It can be said that this product is the pioneer when it comes to this kind of technology. The person who will wear the VR headset will have very accurate real time control over the robotic arm and hence can easily teach the robot various works and steps which the robot can later perform if commanded. This made recording in a different and robotic way which is easier than it was before.
This breakthrough paves the way for other projects too. Now robots can be created and designed very easily and quickly if programmed in VR. Hence, through this, anyone can effortlessly program or reprogram the behavior of robots. This program also allows robots to enter dangerous situations like bomb disposal situations at very remote places without any prior command. The benefits of this project don’t end here.
The medical sector is also hugely benefited through this wonderful product. For example, now a surgeon sitting on one part of the world can perform intrinsic operations on patients in another part of the world very successfully without any beforehand intense training in how to control robots. This also proves how simple the working fundamentals of this product is.
It can be proudly and surely said that this utterly brilliant piece of technological creation by 219 Design which will inspire other developers to focus their attention on this type of technology and develop it even more. This brilliant 3D printed product not only gave us the opportunity to work with an amazing service but also aspires us to create new products like bomb disposal robots, VR surgery, post-disaster recovery, etc. With this, the state of living in this world will change for good. In all this lies the true significance of a scientific creation and this is the ultimate goal which 219 Design aspires to fulfill. Hats off to 219!
Featured image: 219 Design