We have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Robot Army. That’s not really a sentence you get to say every day is it? Well, we get to! This robot army isn’t as scary as it sounds. Instead of showing up armed as one might expect from the name, this robot army of delta bots is here to dance!
This project has been a favorite amongst the editors for some time now. After seeing a smaller demo last year, and watching the successful crowdfunding campaign to grow the robot army, we were very excited to see what would arrive in the Bay Area this year.
We were not let down. 84 of these delta style robots were there, swaying and bobbing to music and flashing their LEDs in unison, their bone-shaped arms glowing with fluorescence in the big dark hall. That dark room made filming a bit difficult, which explains how Sara Petkus, one of the creators, is slightly out of focus the entire time.
As Petkus points out in the video, they have plans to add an entire interactive element to the system. They have been working on incorporating a Microsoft Kinect, allowing you to wave your hands and have the robots respond to your motion. Hopefully next year they’ll return to Maker Faire with the interactive additions in place. We would love to see individuals able to command this robot army!
Bringing something like this to events can be a daunting task. As Petkus explains on her personal blog, many of the parts are 3D printed and she was concerned that the hot temperatures in the trailer might be close to the melting point of the PLA she used to make the parts. The image of molten piles of plastic arriving at the event is a bit sad but not entirely too far fetched. Realistically, the parts could have warped as many 3D printed parts do when left in hot cars.
Ultimately, everything was fine and the Robot Army lives to dance another day.