Robots as Design Tools

As a „Digital Artisan“ my tools change fast, and to stay up to date I regularly attend lectures, fairs and workshops. Recently robots often crossed my path and I discovered that not only my software and modeling skills are also suited to control robots, but that there are many intersections with what I do and interests me.

In May I attended a conference in Basel dedicated to "Applied Robotics in Art and Design Education“ (http://www.hyperwerk.ch/robotics/). A few weeks later in Milan, where I visited the „Technology Hub“ fair (http://www.technologyhub.it/en/), I met again a robot involved in an experimental project that explores robots as a powerful design tool for designers (http://robotrip.it). Finally last Saturday I participated in the “Kuka open traces” workshop organized by Caracol Design Studio and WeMake Fablab in Milan, where we were introduced to using Grasshopper, a graphical algorithm editor tightly integrated with Rhino’s 3D modeling tools, to create designs that can be read and executed by an industrial Kuka robot (http://wemake.fikket.com/event/kuka-open-traces). The outcome was a parametric design then processed by the robot holding a pen: a nice example of a machine made work with a "hand made" touch. The limitations of the tools and the errors contributed to make the digitally designed and produced result particularly interesting, something I have also observed and explored in my 3D printed work.

Location of the robotics conference in Basel

Location of the robotics conference in Basel

Robotrip project at „Technology Hub“ fair in Milan

Robotrip project at „Technology Hub“ fair in Milan

“Kuka open traces” workshop in Milan

“Kuka open traces” workshop in Milan

“Kuka open traces” workshop in Milan

“Kuka open traces” workshop in Milan

“Kuka open traces” workshop in Milan

“Kuka open traces” workshop in Milan