CD: Tatsuya Matsui
D: Tatsuya Matsui
TC: Flower Robotics, Inc.
P: Masao Okamoto
CL: Flower Robotics, Inc.
WEB SITE: www.flower-robotics.com/patin/
Patin is Flower Robotics’ own thinking domestic robot. Its name comes from the French word for ‘skating’.
We got to thinking:
Wouldn’t it be great if the electrical appliances and other household tools you had around the home started moving about freely? If we put various different products from different makers on skates, wouldn’t that give us something new?
Then we thought:
What about if Patin could not only move, but think, grow, and accumulate data? In other words, what if we gave Patin artificial intelligence? Wouldn’t that dramatically contribute to its usefulness?
The upshot of all of these thoughts was an entirely new way of utilizing robots, whereby the Patin itself (the base unit) is combined with interchangeable modules (service units). The design of the base unit comes from our original concept of ‘skating’. The result? A beautiful curved creation that traces graceful arcs as it moves. A functioning domestic robot. A structure that links up with various service units.
We carefully considered how to ensure the robot could function as a platform in various situations without any glitches, making sure its functions harmonized well with the environment in which they would be used.
In order to ensure Patin could move about with maximum ease and efficiency, we used omniwheels. Combining the rotation of the wheels themselves (for forward and backward motion) with the rotation of the barrel-shaped rollers around the perimeters of the wheels (for left and right motion) allows Patin to move freely in any direction. The omniwheels also enable on-the-spot 360-degree rotation.
Patin’s structure takes advantage of these characteristics by positioning the wheels on the circumference of a form that is circular when viewed from above.
The circularity of the design also represents the cycle and circularity of the connection between Patin, its service units and the cloud.