As we’ve pointed out here before, the holy grail, the killer app, of robot domestication appears to be robots that can serve drinks. PopSci has posted a piece about former Battlebots competitor Jamie Price and his bartender bot:
A veteran of the TV show Battlebots, Jamie Price has built plenty of destructive machines. But late last year, he designed a robot with a more mellow calling: offering cold beer and cocktails. The result — a masterpiece of plywood, plastic, aluminum and electric motors called Bar2D2 — serves up everything but the sage advice.
The 35-year-old salesman from Nashville modeled his machine on the iconic Star Wars droid R2D2. He took a plastic dome from a bird feeder to use as a head and built the robot’s plywood skeleton to match. To make Bar2D2 mobile, Price stripped out the seat, the control system and a pair of wheels from a used electric wheelchair, added a new 12-volt battery, and wired a receiver to the motor so he could control it using an R/C helicopter-type remote. He also created a system that lets him send drink orders wirelessly from his computer to the robot, which then mixes the spirits to make perfect cocktails.
Bar2D2 proved to be a hit when Price took it to a convention recently, but he isn’t finished yet. Next he’s adding a breathalyzer and LED-backed projector that displays blood-alcohol content. Give me your keys, Obi-Wan.