Supply Bots

If you haven’t spent much time aboard a naval vessel, the Supply Department is the part of the ship charged with managing spare parts and ordering more. The Supply Department’s spaces also have a strange tendency to be the first fitted out with the nicest kit and upgrades. So it wouldn’t shock me to one day stroll in and find something like this:

A voice-activated storage unit with to help keep track of thousands of parts:

According to Danh Trinh, creator of the StorageBot:

The hardest parts to find were always those rare miscellaneous parts that were thrown somewhere into a “junk” bin. StorageBot solves the location problem by listening to my voice commands, processing the location of parts from a master database and then delivering the matching bins in a manner that only a robot can do!

Of course all the normal disclaimers bear stating: the system would need to be ruggedized, would likely have sea state restrictions, and each user would need to set up their voice recognition. Then again there’s the question of whether such a system would be worth it, or even practical. At a COTS or DIY price of roughly $700 (according to a PopSci.com article I can no longer access) the monetary burden doesn’t appear to high, and after all, Supply could never let one of the other shipboard “shops” get their hands on this tech first.

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