It appears that scientists have managed to create a machine that can assemble IKEA furniture in about 20 minutes.
Of course, it2 a few years to do the programming:
Singaporean scientists have asked the question: “Can robots assemble an IKEA chair?” and come back with enough of a “Yes” that The Register feels it time to call for robots to take this job away from humans. Pleeeease, robots. Take this job away from us!
The boffins behind this breakthrough, assistant professor Pham Quang Cuong and a team of students, all of Nanyang Technological University, were cognizant of previous attempts at unpacking flat-pack kit that had used bespoke kit. So they instead used off-the-shelf robots and open-source code like the Point cloud library and gave them the job of assembling a “STEFAN” chair.
The robots didn’t do all the work themselves – assistant professor Pham and his students laid out the parts for the bots to find. But once unleashed, the machines did the job in 20 minutes and 19 seconds with over half of that time spent on computing the required actions. Actual build time was nine minutes, a little less than the average human according to IKEA.
Success came only at the fourth attempt, a failure rate that would put IKEA out of business. Problems on early attempts included the bots breaking some parts.
The team’s paper is here. (paid subscription required)
I’m feeling much better about the rise of the machines.