Print Yourself a Robot
Along with the flying cars we don’t have in every driveway, the future past the year 2000 was supposed to feature robots in the home, attending to our every desire. About the closest we’ve come to that so far is probably the Roomba. If you’re getting tired of waiting for big business to fill your robot-shaped void, maybe you can print one out.
InMoov is an open source-based project that is providing design downloads, encouragement, and how-to instructions for just that purpose. The project was started by Gael Langevin in France, and began with printing out the exoskeleton of a hand. A year later and Langevin has progressed to two arms, two hands, a very basic torso and a head.
Langevin used Blender to design his robot, and MyRobotLab as an operating system. It recognizes voice commands and responds to gesture control. Just the arms and hands cost $900 to build, not counting the price of a 3D printer. Still, when even the basic Roomba will cost you $500, that isn’t a horrible price for the beginnings of a full-sized robot.
Designs for various robot parts are hosted on Thingiverse, with links on the InMoov blog. So, if you have a 3D printer, a steady cash flow, and a goodly amount of time to spend on some new project, you don’t have to wait any longer for your very own robot butler.
Below you’ll find a video about the InMoov robot.