Exoskeletons for Sale – Enhancing the Human Capabilities.

For many of us if we wish to make ourselves stronger we go to the gym, lift some weights, put on some form and then find that to maintain our new-found strength we need to regularly go to the gym.

I myself have an ongoing gym membership just to try to maintain some fitness and form in my older years, a kind of preventative measure you might say. What if I’m physically challenged or elderly?

While I do see a lot more physically challenged and elderly people in the gym these days, I don’t see all physically challenged and elderly people in the gym.

What is an Exoskeleton?

Working with an Exoskeleton.

While nature uses Exoskeletons mainly for protection, either from environment or predators, unless you are in the military or a die hard prepper, most of us would look for just making our job a little or a lot easier. A few years back now there was a well-used working term called Repedative Strain Injury, while I haven’t heard this term lately the effects of this are still prevalent today.

At the time of writing this, there is a well-known auto builder that is trialing a type of Exoskeleton that assists workers with repetitive overhead work. This work is responsible for a lot of lost work time due to sore shoulders. The device allows workers to keep lifting their arms and tools above their heads without straining the shoulders. Already the company is saying that they are seeing a reduction in lost time due to shoulder strain.

Another great invention that has come about is something called the chairless chair (yes you read it right) you may work in an office where you need to move around and then sit down a lot or you may be a maintenance worker that requires a lot of up and down also, imagine being able to “wear” your chair that can be set to whatever position you require or even having it preset to a set position whenever you need to sit down.

Exoskeletons for Paraplegics.

I can’t even try to imagine what it would be like to have a reduced or non-existent use of my limbs. At times throughout my life I’ve had reduced mobility due to injury and that was frustrating enough, let alone a permanent disability. While in the future decades we hear talk of biological technology reversing these types of reduced body functions, I’m sure there are hundreds of thousands of people in the world or maybe even millions that want mobility now.

There is good news that in the near future that people confined to wheelchairs due to Paraplegia will be getting up and about with the aid of Exoskeletons. Already we have a company in Israel producing and selling Exoskeletons to aid those with Paraplegia, even to the extent that the governing health body in the United States have approved them for payment assistant. While these devices aren’t cheap, about the price of a mid range car, what price would you put on gaining your lost mobility?

Exoskeletons for the Elderly.

From my own perspective, I’m closer to this than I wish, well to the elderly part anyway. I’m fortunate enough to have the help of an Exercise Physiologist that is helping me work with my weaknesses and take steps via the gym and swimming pool to improve and strengthen my mobility, so hopefully I shall move unassisted for the next 20 years or so.

However, for those that are having difficulty with walking, going up or down stairs or mobility in general due to the advancement of lifes time line, there are now Exoskeletons for the elderly that can make life a lot easier. In developed “1st” world countries families have a totally different structure than those in developing “3rd” world countries. People/families in 1st world countries are all about becoming richer, this in turn makes us become time poorer, while in developing countries tend to be more involved within the household, thus being more supportive of each other.

If we, take a look at China it’s only been over the last few generations that the united household has become fragmented. They have gone from a multi generation household to one where the younger generation has pursued an education and then moved away from the family unit to maintain their newfound independence and wealth.

All this is leading to our elderly being left to fend for themselves to a certain extent, however, in their later years they still need and maybe even more so to be mobile. With the help of new technology like exoskeletons this mobility can be augmented thus maintaining some independence.

I Lift – Exoskeletons For Strength.

I believe that within the next 20 years we will have robots doing our heavy lifting dangerous and industrial work, however, in the interim how can we improve our lifting capabilities?

Without a doubt my favorite Exoskeleton would have to be the one portrayed in the “Aliens” movies. Now I think that these machines have a limited environment for operation mainly heavy industry, I think if we scale down the application we would have a lot of potential to assist workers to lift heavy loads.

The military are looking at soldiers carrying around 90 kg (200 lbs), as far as my research can find, industry is looking at around the 70 kg (150 lbs) area. When you consider that it’s a struggle for a fit person to handle a 35 kg parcel, to then being able to double that weight capacity puts a whole new perspective on what one person can do.

More Than a Hard Shell.

Throughout mankind’s history the one thing that has driven change, is that which makes us “better”. With the help of Exoskeletons that tradition continues. Workers can be made stronger, the physically challenged will be less isolated from mainstream society and the elderly will be more mobile and be able to socialise more.

To put it into a nut shell, the enhancement we gain from Exoskeletons will be more than just strength. Everyone has something they can contribute to making society better and the more inclusive we can make society the better for all.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post, please leave a comment on your thoughts, either good or bad it all helps.

Best regards; Paul.

Domestic Robots for Sale – Rosie has some competition.

The Jetson’s had a robot (Rosie) to do their house chores for them. While today’s domestic robots for sale don’t have Rosie’s personality they do however have the ability to do the chores. Along with giving the cat a ride around the room, we have floor cleaners that vacuum when one isn’t there, we have hard floor cleaners (wet & dry). There are robotic pool cleaners and even robotic lawn mowers, personal robots for helping and interaction and not forgetting to mention window cleaners.

Interactive Personal Home Robot.

There is a reason why I put this element first. I think that of all the domestic robots for sale the interactive personal robot has the scope for the greatest change to our home life. Listed below are some of the reasons why I think this is the case.

  • Educational, we all want our children to be the smartest they can be. Through interactive learning programmes, education will be fun and complementary to our children’s formal education.
  • Information Hub, whether it be recipes, dress style, schedule reminders or aspects like helpful instructional videos, your interactive personal robot has it covered.
  • Home security, when the household is asleep one can have an electronic presence maintaining a close eye on the home. Once one leaves the house it’s good to know what is going on, with your interactive personal robot one can have a live video feed to your personal mobile device of the security of one’s home.
  • Monitoring, You may have older independent family members that can now have a personal assistant to maintain that independence while giving you a peace of mind that should anything happen you would be notified immediately.
  • Overall I can see the interactive personal robot enhancing our domestic environment.

Floor Cleaners.

When, you, think about it floors are one of the dirtiest places in the home. Each day we bring the outdoors into our home via the soles of our shoes. Even while a lot of households nowadays have a leave the shoes at the door policy, you know somehow the floor still accumulates a lot of foreign material, from dust to dirt to pet hair.

I don’t know about you, however, I hate cleaning floors, from allocating the time needed, to moving the furniture around and to get into those hard to reach spots. Then once the floor is mopped you can’t walk on it until it’s dry, so you leave the house for an hour or so while it dries, or one could come home to a nice clean floor that has been vacuumed or washed while one is at work, knowing that a part of your weekend has been freed up to concentrate on other tasks.

 

Pool Cleaners.

Let’s take a step back in time. I remember when we got our first swimming pool. We felt like we were moving up in the world. It was an above ground pool with aluminium walls and lined with a huge plastic liner. I feel lucky now that my father didn’t trust me with the chemicals or the cleaning of the pool. I just got the bag on the end of a long pole out occasionally to scoop out the leaves and other debris. From that time until even nowadays all I seem to hear is that it’s just work, work, work to keep them clean and at the correct pH level. Chemical/salt management has certainly come a long way and pool cleaners are like chalk and cheese compared to the old methods. From budget to premium models your robotic pool cleaner has you covered.

Lawn mowing robots.

Let’s get this straight, I have never liked lawn mowing. I don’t know if it comes from when I was a kid and we had a heavy push powered lawn mower or if it was just the clean up beforehand and after or the amount of time it took out of my day. I have now changed my attitude towards lawn mowing, in fact, I love it! I love it so much that I would gladly do it every day if the grass grew that fast, since now we have lawn mowing domestic robots for sale that will mow your lawn whilst one is doing other chores or even leisure activities. From the small easy to manage lawn to the 1/2 acre plus expanse, there is a robotic lawnmower to fulfil every mans dreams.

Window Cleaning Robots.

I’m not sure that I mentioned this, however, one can get window cleaning domestic robots. These can be especially helpful if one has large expanses of glass windows, apartment buildings, mirrors or other smooth gloss surfaces. Just as there are many differing window types, there are different types of robotic window cleaners. In bygone days we had small window panes set in wooden frames with putty held mullions. These days we have large glass panels that may have mullion joints or even frameless joints. With the advent of robotic window cleaners, I don’t think it will be too long before the humble squeegee is permanently consigned to the recycle bin.

 

Robots in the Kitchen.

From the humble dishwashing machine/robot to what will become without a doubt my favourite robot, the Robot Kitchen (Master Chef I am not). With the advances in multi-directional joint arms, now up to seven, it is now possible to recreate all the dexterity of the human arm with robotics. We can then apply this with software to create the Robot Kitchen, this awesome machine can prep, cook and clean-up after itself, what’s not to love?

 

Getting One’s House in Order.

Hollywood has shown us many concepts of domestic humanoid robots, as we can see the only domestic robot for sale that comes close to this is the interactive personal robot. While I don’t think we shall ever have the types of humanoids that we see in films in the home (never say never) I see robots becoming an integral part of our home life in the future, by not only making our life easier but also enhancing our lifestyle.

 

New Agriculture Technology – Leading The Way.

Technology is changing the world, from smartphones, smartwatches, tablets, faster internet, and additive manufacturing (3D printing) just to name a few, the old ways of life are fading into obscurity.

It’s now time for the agriculture sector to reap the rewards that this abundant technology has to offer.

Imagine spending time finding, identifying and treating a problem area or plant, not only would this be time-consuming, but also very costly. With the advent of new agriculture technology for example; swarm bots, a robot can spend whatever time is needed on a problem area or plant to remedy the problem.

How much more efficient would a cattle farmer be with a robot that can move his herds around his pastures while at the same time monitoring their health and condition?

What would be the cost of employing someone to work your assets 24/7 365 days of the year?

Additive Application.

Over the last hundred years or so we have seen the rise of broadacre farming, while this may seem to have the advantage of more is better we run into the problem of can one size fit all?

The application of additives (herbicides, pesticides, and fertilisers) to one’s crop has been applied with a broad brush so to speak. Through the use of robots, we can “individualise” applications of these additives.

This could be anything from resistant weeds, poor soil nutrition or pest infestations. Rather than spray large areas one could allow the robot to go to the problem and spend whatever time is needed to rectify it. Another advantage of this would be that it could be carried out at any time of the day (or night) without difficulty.

For a landholder to do this or have a worker do this would be cost prohibitive. To have a machine capable of carrying out these tasks would not only prove to be cost-effective, also it would mean that the most valuable commodity of all, time, has been best utilized.

Now we move into the ecological advantages of new agriculture technology. With targeted applications comes the ecological advantages of fewer additives due to the direct application to affected areas, thus no overspray left to be carried away by the wind, or run off of residue on the land into our water systems. This can be anywhere from a 40% and in some cases, a 90% reduction of additives and I don’t think I need to draw a line to the cost savings that would ensure from fewer additives applied to crops.

Eco-Friendly Solutions.

While there can be no doubt the role of chemicals has greatly improved crop yields and quality over the last five or six decades, some will argue that these aren’t the best methods of food production. With the advent of GMO’s this argument has widened and in some cases become highly contentious. How then do we satisfy Anti-GMO advocates in riding one’s crop of unwanted weeds? Imagine going back to pre-chemical solutions of uprooting (hoeing), by hand this would be very labour intensive, however, with the new agriculture technology, one can implement this form of farming without the time consuming or back-breaking techniques of days gone by. From hoeing, tiling and even the seemingly sci-fi use of lasers and microwaves, one can reduce chemical usages even further.

Labour.

Farming has a labour problem, the younger generations have accessed higher education and thus the lure of exciting jobs in the “big smoke” has drawn them away from a career on the land, we have an ageing population of farmers which in turn leads to a replacement problem down the line. With the advent of robots on the land, the labour deficit has been greatly relieved. Another knock-on advantage here is that the technology aspect is now seen to be drawing tech-savvy individuals back into rural life.

Not only are these young people being drawn back to jobs on large farms, but they also are being drawn into building their own small holdings that range from traditional farming, also there is permaculture and other organic alternatives being explored.

Drones – UAV’s – Flying Robots.

With everything from targeted aerial spraying, crop and soil surveying and other applications, UAV’s have a big future in agriculture. Listed below are six benefits of drones for the person on the land.

  • Soil and field analysis: Before planting even starts one can assess soil condition and planting patterns. This can be augmented by the use of 2D and 3D mapping. After planting things like nitrogen levels in the soil and the best use of irrigation can be observed and maintained.
  • Planting: Drones can be used to plant crops by shooting seed pods along with nutrients into the soil. This has been shown to increase of up to 75% take-up of new plantings and up 85% saving on planting costs.
  •   Crop spraying: Drones are very accurate when applying chemicals to crops, firstly this brings down the cost per hectare (acre), and secondly manned crop dusting has always been not only expensive, also extremely dangerous. Due to low flight heights, drone spraying can be anywhere up to five times quicker than traditional methods.
  • Crop monitoring: In the past monitoring has been slow, imprecise and expensive, however, with drones a landowner can monitor crops day to day crop development in real time.
  • Irrigation: With the many sensors available a landowner can see what parts of a field are dry and need attention before planting. Once crops are sown and growing various aspects such as vegetation index and the amount heat and energy a crop emits can be tracked.
  • Health assessment:  By scanning a crop using both visible and near-infrared light, early detection of sickness within a crop or surrounds can then be acted upon rather than later when it may be too late. This would also have implications with insurance claims as documentation would be recorded.

Sourced from: https://www.pwc.pl/pl/pdf/clarity-from-above-pwc.pdf

Propulsion.

Traditional methods of propulsion as in fossil fuel motors are not only costly in terms of having to maintain supplies, however, maintenance can be quiet costly also and  THEY CAN BE VERY NOISY.

Rechargeable batteries on drones are now reaching the ability to service up to 200 hectares (500 acres) on a single charge. While field robots can be a return to base and be recharged, or solar powered while working. Being that the motors are electric, maintenance costs average around a 40% saving and because they are virtually silent (very quiet) the disruption to stock and neighbours is negligible.

 

Shutting The Gate.

Whatever the need for the person on the land, there are now solutions that are cost-effective and an advantage to maintain life on the land. The benefits that are being delivered by technology and automation will see not only better returns on time invested, also the quality of products being delivered to market.

Whether applied to a large holding or a small acreage or even the hobby farmer, the solutions are here and they will continue to get more efficient and an all-around benefit to producers and consumers.

 

 

About Paul.

Welcome to a journey into our future.

You may well ask!

Being born way back in the 1950’s you may think what the hell is this bloke doing promoting new technology? Good question.
When I was just starting school, I’ll always remember that my teacher at the time said that one day we will have many labour-saving appliances and we will have lots of leisure time.

My day started at around 5.30 am I was required to prepare the stove for the day. This included chopping the kindling, cleaning out yesterday’s ashes, making the fire and lighting it.

If we were having, say a chicken dinner we would have chosen a chook (chicken) the previous day, chased and caught it, decapitated it, plucked and gutted it. Come cooking day, mum would make the stuffing from scratch, prep the vegetables and at the right time put the meal in the lovely hot oven prepared by yours truly earlier.

Today we have instant roast chicken, just zip down to the supermarket in your way flasher car, and maybe even buy some ready cooked veggies and viola meal done. Do we have more leisure time? I think it high time that we move to that semi utopia that was promised way back then.

 

Robots, AI and other services.

While some are hesitant towards Robots, A.I. and associated technologies I think we should embrace them. From exoskeletons helping workers lift safely, helping the elderly and infirmed walk independently to enabling the physically challenged walk again. To robots working the land, in factories and with emergency services in dangerous environments. All the way to autonomous vehicles. I feel the best is yet to come!

The future is ours.

My goal is to help facilitate in some way a transition into a utopia that I think is available to us. This site is a way for you to explore and experience all that the future has to offer in robotics and other labour-saving technologies.

 

All the best,

 

Paul Longva.

www.extrahandrobots.com

admin@extrahandrobots.com