Tag Archives: design

Register Robot System in Japan

Do you ever get tired of waiting in line to check out of a grocery store? In the future, the check-out process will be streamlined, using more robotic registers. Recently, Panasonic teamed with Lawson food stores in Japan for a trial run of its new robotic check-out system. The “Reji-Robo” robotic check-out uses RFID tags to scan the items in a shopper’s basket, and then even bags the groceries automatically. (RFID tags are thin, small electronics components that wirelessly communicate within a short distance.)

Panasonic’s robotic check-out is somewhat similar to Amazon Go’s concept store in Seattle. However, with Reji-Robo, customers get a sensor-equipped basket when they walk into the stores, then choose items and place them into the smart basket. In a step beyond Amazon Go, the Panasonic basket once placed in to the robotic check-out system, automatically computes the transaction, the bottom of the basket opens, and the items are automatically lowered into plastic bags for the shopper.

The RFID system also holds promise to speed up the supply chain, increase accuracy, improve productivity, and improve inventory control and tracking.

What’s in your basket?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss some of the more frustrating and costly parts of retail and shopping.
  2. Show the Panasonic video: https://youtu.be/Hpp-3Ver7ig
  3. If students are not familiar with Amazon Go, view the video and concept at: https://www.amazon.com/b?node=16008589011#
  4. Discuss the four primary marketing strategies: market penetration, market development, product development, and diversification.
  5. Which strategy is Panasonic using for this product? Why?
  6. Divide students into teams. Have each team select one of the four different strategies and explain why that strategy could be used to market robotic check-out systems.

Source: Brandchannel.com

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New “Handle” Robot from Boston Dynamics

Robotic technology is advancing by leaps and bounds. But the ultimate in robotic technology today undoubtedly comes from Boston Dynamics, a spin-off from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Google. The company has a variety of robots with two legs, four legs, and wheels. They can run, leap, fly, walk, and climb buildings.

The newest robot from Boston Robotics is called “Handle.” This robot stands 6.5 foot tall, can travel at a speed of 9 miles per hour, and can even jump a height of four vertical feet!  Handle can go up ramps, spin, bend, travel over uneven ground, stairs, and pick up and carry objects up to 100 pounds.  It uses electric power to operate hydraulic actuators and can cover 15 miles on a single battery charge. The robots use sensor-based controls and computation to build complex, state-of-art robotic devices.

Handle joins a unique product line of sophisticated robots. See them all and be amazed!

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the concepts of products, product line, and product mix.
  2. Bring up Boston Dynamics’s Web site and YouTube page: http://www.bostondynamics.com, and https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7vVhkEfw4nOGp8TyDk7RcQ.
  3. Show the latest video of Handle, plus other videos (these are guaranteed to get students excited).
  4. Using Boston Dynamics, illustrate the concepts of products, product lines, and product mix.
  5. Divide students into teams. Have each team come up with an example of other companies and state the products, product line, and product mix.

Source:  Boston Dynamics, YouTube

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Please, Blow into the Bag

tostios

In a unique package that can analyze breath, Tostitos is collaborating with Uber, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), and Tennessee Titans’ pro football player Delanie Walker. An estimated 70% of accidents on Super Bowl game day are alcohol-related. The social responsibility campaign is aimed at Super Bowl watchers to help them get home safely using a “party safe” Tostitos bag. (Walker’s aunt and uncle were killed in a drunk driving accident when he was playing in the 2013 Super Bowl for the 49ers.)

How does it work? When someone breathes into the bag, it can detect alcohol on their breath and then summon an Uber ride to get the customer home safely. If you’re ok to drive, the bag lights up green. But if you shouldn’t be driving, the bag flashes a red steering wheel with the message “Don’t drink & drive.” The party safe bag also offers a $10 discount on the ride home.

While the package isn’t commercially available for public purchase yet, it should be. As Walker stated in the video, “have a game plan for the big game.”

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss how companies can help promote safety and social responsibilities. What are some of the campaigns that students have seen?
  2. Pose a question to students: Do they have knowledge of someone (perhaps themselves) who should not have been driving at some time? What are the responsibilities of friends, bars, restaurants, and companies to provide safety?
  3. Show the Tostitos site and video: https://www.thatshowweparty.com/#intro
  4. What do students think about this?
  5. Divide students into teams. Have each team brainstorm about other products and brands that could build social responsibility campaigns such as this one.

Source: Brandchannel.com, USA Today    

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