Flexible manufacturing in the modern age: Three steps to automated engineering

copa-data

Martyn Williams, managing director at Copa-Data UK explains how implementing custom machinery and combining industrial equipment with intelligent automation software can help companies implement fully flexible manufacturing. 

Increased demand for customised products and shrinking time-to-market expectations have contributed to the fundamental shift in how products are designed and created.

To fulfil today’s demand for smart products and customised design, manufacturers must break away from their outdated, mass manufacturing habits and explore the world of automated engineering.  Continue reading Flexible manufacturing in the modern age: Three steps to automated engineering

Humanoid robot sumo wrestlers invited to take part in crazy contest

the construct humanoid sumo contest
Let’s get ready to rumble!

No matter how bizarre we think things are, there’s always something even more bizarre than we imagined. 

In the latest challenge to our sanity, The Construct is organising what it says is a “humanoid sumo contest”. Yes, that’s what they said. Sumo, as in Japanese wrestling. With virtual humanoid robots. Within The Construct’s specially-created online environment.

As much as we admire The Construct’s technical achievements, we’re not sure if this apparently absurd idea is the right way to go about marketing what is actually a highly professional and capable cloud-based application for developing robots.

But be that as it may, The Construct has indeed set up a humanoid sumo contest, dojo and all, to see whose robot has the sheer girth and mid-riff elasticity to bounce opponents out of the ring.  Continue reading Humanoid robot sumo wrestlers invited to take part in crazy contest

‘Smart manufacturing is all about an intelligent connected supply chain’

gatehouse logistics small

Lars Mohr Jensen, product manager at GateHouse Logistics, looks into the challenges of  the next industrial revolution and the implications on the connected enterprise

As it stands, factories are dumb – or at least far less intelligent than current technology could actually make them. The current industrial production is inflexible and too expensive and a root cause is supply chain invisibility.

But that’s about to change thanks to Industry 4.0, an initiative with its roots in Germany that aims to bring about the fourth industrial revolution. It heralds the era where manufacturing becomes intelligent and every link in the supply chain talks to each other and is connected.

The smart factory concept means industrial or manufacturing processes will be organized in a smart way compared to tired, traditional methods. In opens the era of intelligent manufacturing where the entire production chain, including suppliers, logistics and product life cycle management are connected across frontiers.  Continue reading ‘Smart manufacturing is all about an intelligent connected supply chain’

Faro launches high-resolution 3D ScanArm for engineering and design applications

faro

Faro Technologies, a provider of 3D measurement and imaging solutions has launched the Faro Design ScanArm, a portable 3D scanning solution tailored for 3D modeling, reverse engineering, and CAD-based design applications across the product lifecycle management (PLM) process.

The Faro Design ScanArm is portable 3D scanning solution tailored for 3D modeling, reverse engineering, and CAD-based design applications across the product lifecycle management (PLM) process.

As a limited-time promotional offer, the Faro Design ScanArm will be bundled with 3D System’s Geomagic software at a reduced launch price.  Continue reading Faro launches high-resolution 3D ScanArm for engineering and design applications

Stäubli to host series of events about robotics in automotive industry

stäubli robotics suite
Screenshot of Stäubli Robotics Suite 2016

Stäubli will be hosting Automotive Technology Days 2016 in Novi, Michigan at the Suburban Collection Showplace from May 24th to the 25th.

The company says its Automotive Technology Days will be an “exciting event geared towards those automotive professionals who want to maximize profit and value in their workflows”.

Stäubli’s industry experts will be present to demonstrate how their top of the line robotic technology can improve productivity with clean, consistent, high performance robots. 

The company also wants to show off the latest version of its Stäubli Robotics Suite 2016, a PC software suite for robotics application development and maintenance.

Continue reading Stäubli to host series of events about robotics in automotive industry

Virtual assistants prepare to take over the world of work

Dennis Mortensen, CEO, x.ai,
Dennis Mortensen, CEO, x.ai, pictured in the Wall Street area of New York, US

Exclusive interview with Dennis Mortensen, founder and CEO of intelligent assistants technology developer x.ai 

Virtual assistants, or intelligent assistants, are multiplying by the day. Currently there are around a dozen really well-known ones, such as Siri and Cortana, and then there’s several dozen other reasonably well-known ones talking or otherwise communicating their way into the public consciousness.

These intelligent assistants can be placed in at least 10 different categories, such as text and chatbots, personal advisors, and employee assistants.

Of these, perhaps the most commercially profitable is the employee assistants category. And within this segment, the virtual assistance technology that arguably holds most promise is the one produced by x.ai – in part because among its investors is SoftBank, the Japanese communications giant behind Pepper, the cloud-connected humanoid robot which is claimed to be able to discern human emotions and communicate appropriately.  Continue reading Virtual assistants prepare to take over the world of work

IdeaHub launches robotics challenge with ABB

abb yumi

IdeaHub is recruiting robotics and software innovators worldwide to take on the challenge of improving the way humans work and interact with the next generation of industrial robots.

Working on behalf of ABB Robotics, IdeaHub will help successful applicants pitch their ideas and secure uniquely tailored support packages to maximise their venture’s commercial potential, including investment, mentoring and access to cutting edge hardware.

IdeaHub is a cross sector, open innovation platform that connects visionaries worldwide with funding and support from global corporations.  Continue reading IdeaHub launches robotics challenge with ABB

Google boss downplays devices and talks up artificial intelligence

google sundar pichai

Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, says the days of the ‘device’ are numbered 

The chief executive of Google, Sundar Pichai, says he can foresee the day when the “device” as we know it will be no more.

In a blog post on Google’s website, Pichai says: “Looking to the future, the next big step will be for the very concept of the ‘device’ to fade away.”

The reason, Pichai writes, is because artificial intelligence will make all devices work seamlessly and, therefore, make devices less important than the AI software behind them.

“Over time, the computer itself – whatever its form factor – will be an intelligent assistant helping you through your day,” says Pichai. “We will move from mobile first to an AI first world.”

Full story on Google’s blog.

An algorithm that makes music on the fly

Interview with Dr Kevin Curran, head of Ambient Intelligence, Ulster University

A computer science lecturer at Ulster University has invented a piece of software that composes music on the fly and is looking for someone to continue the work and eventually commercialise it. 

Dr Kevin Curran, who is also head of the Ambient Intelligence Group at Ulster and a senior member of the IEEE, has published more than 800 academic papers.

He says the paper about his algorithm which can create music dynamically is one if favourites.

The software was intended to fill any gaps in streaming media to mobile devices by actually generating a piece of music that actually fits in with the music.  Continue reading An algorithm that makes music on the fly

Infosys to network all Kuka industrial robots in new global Cloud platform

The two companies say they will jointly develop Industry 4.0 solutions, while Kuka has established a new software company 

Kuka and Infosys say they will jointly develop solutions to support companies embracing Industry 4.0.

Kuka is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of industrial robots, and Infosys specialises in software solutions for large businesses.

The aim of the collaboration is the development of a software platform that will allow customers to collect, evaluate and utilize data for improving their own processes.  Continue reading Infosys to network all Kuka industrial robots in new global Cloud platform

Infineon supplies CERN with sensors to detect dark matter

The giant atom-smashing machine at CERN
The giant atom-smashing machine at CERN

Dark matter is the mysterious and elusive target for the world’s scientists now

Ninety-five percent of the universe is still considered unexplored. Scientists at CERN, the world’s largest particle physics research center, located in Geneva, are working on solving these mysteries.

In May 2012, researchers there discovered the so-called Higgs Boson, whose prediction won Peter Higgs and François Englert the Nobel prize in physics.

One of the things CERN scientists are researching at the moment is dark matter: Although it may well have five times the mass of visible matter in the universe, this extent can only be indirectly proved. With a bit of luck, CERN will also succeed in generating dark matter.  Continue reading Infineon supplies CERN with sensors to detect dark matter

The great migration: cloud computing for smart manufacturing

smart factory illustration

Martyn Williams, managing director at Copa-Data UK, discusses “unlocking the value of cross-facility data sets” through cloud computing for smart manufacturing

According to an industry survey by IBM, two thirds of mid-sized companies have already implemented – or are currently considering – a cloud based storage model for their organisation.

The analytic advantages of cloud computing in industry are no secret, in fact, 70 per cent of these cloud-using respondents said they were actively pursuing cloud-based analytics to gleam greater insights and efficiency in order to achieve business goals.  Continue reading The great migration: cloud computing for smart manufacturing

Dassault Systèmes teams up with HTC to provide virtual reality to enterprises

dassault htc vive

HTC has formed a strategic partnership with Dassault Systèmes to drive virtual reality (VR) into the enterprise space. HTC has a VR system called Vive, which the two companies will work on refining applications for. 

Dassault Systèmes has developed the 3DExperience platform as a collaborative virtual environment for businesses to create differentiating customer experiences.

Dassault Systèmes applications can already be used on the HTC Vive VR system, which is said to provide “total experiential immersion and room-scale capability”, say the companies, adding that it delivers a 3D experience in a highly accessible format that enables their customers to easily envisage potential solutions.  Continue reading Dassault Systèmes teams up with HTC to provide virtual reality to enterprises

The IoT brings industry revolution and risk at the same time

Industrial control systems could become more vulnerable to cyberattack as they become more connected through the industrial internet of things
Industrial control systems could become more vulnerable to cyberattack as they become more connected through the industrial internet of things

The internet of things is enabling industry to connect individual robotic and automated work cells with other similar cells to create multicellular organisms within what could now be referred to as “smart factories”, particularly as the factory building itself can be connected to those multicellular organisms operating within its walls. 

Not only that, those smart factories can themselves be connected to other smart factories within the body of the industrial company’s entire estate, which itself is all wired up to what could be called a central nervous system.

Yes, industrial control systems are going through an evolutionary phase the like of which has never been seen before in industry, all brought about by the IoT.  Continue reading The IoT brings industry revolution and risk at the same time

ICINCO conference to showcase global expertise in data science

The 13th International Conference on Informatics in Control, Automation and Robotics – ICINCO 2016 

The Thirteenth International Conference on Informatics in Control, Automation and Robotics (ICINCO), will take place from 29 to 31 of July 2016 in Lisbon, Portugal.

Organized by the Institute for Systems and Technologies of Information, Control and Communication (INSTICC), the purpose of the conference is to bring together researchers, engineers and practitioners interested in the application of informatics to control, automation and robotics.  Continue reading ICINCO conference to showcase global expertise in data science