Robot Domination: Automated Factory Sorts, Seals, and Ships With Little Human Contact

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Intelligrated Makes Pallets2

What's next on the manufacturing robot ToDo list... packing pallets? Check.

Robots are claiming an ever increasing portion of the manufacturing pie, and they don’t even like pie. The latest example of the rise of automated factory is all about adding some robotic spice to the palate…er, pallet. Intelligrated is an Ohio-based firm that specializes in designing, building, and installing custom automated systems for factories, and they excel at creating machines that arrange goods on pallets so they can be shipped en masse. Sounds boring, looks pretty amazing. Check out the video below to see Intelligrated ‘palletize’ pretty much any manufactured good you can think of. Like so many other stages in production, prepping items for shipping is yet another task that has fallen to the might of industrial robots.

The truth is that automated systems are taking over all parts of the modern economy, but manufacturing is where this transformation is easiest to see. We’ve previously reviewed automated factories that handle all manner of creation and assembly. Even those mundane tasks that still require human ingenuity, such as packing irregular goods into boxes, are augmented with robotic helper systems. As you watch Intelligrated demonstrate how automated solutions have revolutionized another stage of manufacturing, keep in mind that what’s true for robots and blue collar jobs will soon be true for artificial intelligence and white collar jobs as well. Whether it’s AI journalists, or automated scientists, machines will move into higher paying occupations in the near future. Humans may not lose their jobs altogether, they may simply be able to do more in less time, but there’s little doubt that the majority of the grunt work is going to be taken over by our robotic brethren. Good or bad, that future is already upon us.

[image and video credit: Intelligrated]
[source: Intelligrated]

Discussion — 6 Responses

  • Joey1058 March 23, 2011 on 5:54 pm

    And they STILL haven’t figured out how to go from cleaning toilets, to mopping floors, then taking out trash. My job is still secure.

  • Guest March 24, 2011 on 5:23 am

    exceed -> excel?

  • Branden Silva March 25, 2011 on 12:04 am

    It’s just a matter of time until this hits the consumer space and changes everything!

    • DubStomp Branden Silva April 18, 2011 on 11:02 pm

      I run machines like these everyday…. their all over the world already :/

  • Les Zouazo March 26, 2011 on 3:16 am

    “Good or bad, that future is already upon us.”

    Let stop beating around the bush, shall we?

    This future will be good or bad depend exclusively on how we redefine work, our social contract (social darwinism need not apply…it already sucks immensely) and education. And yes! distribution of wealth ought to be part of the discussion too.

    One thing is sure: we just can’t tell millions of people: “Too bad, you’re out, good luck!” People who’ve lost everything have nothing to lose.

    History teaches quite a few hard lessons about that.

    So, what is it going to be? Ever increasing technological progress coupled with social retardation due to our extreme incapacity to think different? Or accepting that technological progress forcibly entails some fundamental redefinitions of our social substrate?