Last year I looked at a new platform that was aiming to allow people to build modules for drones in an open source and collaborative way. The platform was based around a camera that users were invited to hack and improve.
This kind of modular approach is even more powerful when combined with the various maker movement sites that are springing up around the world. A company called Magzor has recently launched a modular based platform to help the maker movement build complex robots.
The platform, which is called the Mechatronics Design Platform (MDP) provides users with a free digital workspace with a range of support to help them develop sophisticated robots.
For instance, a graphic library is provided of all the components necessary to build a robot, including functional arms all the way up to intelligent control panels.
The system is designed to be as user friendly as possible, with a drag and drop process to add components to the system, after which the AI will fill in any gaps that exist to ensure the design is functional.
A schematic diagram is then created to show how the robot needs to be put together to ensure it works as intended, and informs the user of the connections required to guarantee this.
Once the concept is honed and the user is happy with it, it will be possible for the user to buy the required parts to construct the robot via the Magzor shop.
Whilst the platform is undoubtedly user friendly and does overcome the technical vagaries of building an intelligent robot, it does beg the question of just how functional what’s created will be.
I have my doubts, but it will certainly be an interesting project to track. Check out the video below for more information.