No Assembly Required
It's furniture that puts itself together:
The EPFL biorobotics lab is developing self-configurable robotics known as "Roombots," which can merge with materials and furnishings to create adaptable furniture for the home and office.Your room will be assimilated-and color-coordinated...
"It's a bit of a science-fiction project in my lab to create intelligent furniture which can change shape and functionality," explains lab director Auke Ijspeert. "We envisage the Roombots moving and combining to create a diversity of elements including tables and chairs." The goal is to create furniture that can be re-used in multiple ways.
Designs would consist of Roombot modules -- which resemble two dice stuck together, and contain a battery, three motors for movements and pivoting, and a wireless connection. Each module is just 22cm long and the team imagine just 10 of them could combine to build a broad range of furniture. "The Roombots would be coupled with more passive materials such as a table top or cushion to create the end results," says Ijspeert.