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SolidCon highlights IoT innovations

26 May 2014  | Jessica Lipsky

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Modular robots

Hardware start-up Modbot has created Lego-like parts for modular robotics. The system's re-usable modules snap together and are aimed at hobbyist and industrial applications. Modbot is protoyping the modules and working on a mobile interface to build, program, and test the bots.

 Modular parts connect to create a robotic arm

Modular parts connect to create a robotic arm. (Source: Modbot)

Modbot demonstrated a modular camera dolly. Its base "servo" comes with temperature and accelerometer sensors, as well as an embedded microcontroller from Texas Instruments or Freescale. The servo can be connected to a joint and link.


Inside a "servo."

Smart engine takes flight

GE Aviation showcased a to-scale model of its latest "smart" engine. Engines gather an average of 1TB of data per flight but don't use much of the information. GE officials said the new engine will maximise fuel efficiency and maintenance times by taking note of the areas in which the aircraft flies and plotting the data from each flight.

 GE's smart engine

Scale model of GE's smart engine. (Photo by Jessica Lipsky)

Liquid machine vision

 Easy to build tactile surfaces produced sound when touched

Easy to build tactile surfaces produced sound when touched.

UC Berkeley students and researchers created tactile liquid surfaces (Fl.Uis or fluid user interfaces) that make touch detection possible. Fl.UIs create colour changes around a user's points-of-contact, which is recovered by an overhead camera for touch and gesture input.

 UC Berkeley students used machine vision to sense movement in liquids and make sound

UC Berkeley students used machine vision to sense movement in liquids and make sound.

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