made-by-monkeys2

Good ideas with bad execution, or good execution of what should be bad ideas - an analysis of inferior, off-beat or malfunctioning products, and how other people's failures can help us design better stuff.

I can’t believe someone makes… Robotic Suitcases

hop-suitcase.jpgWant to go ‘hands free’ at the airport? Luggage-wise that is (obviously, you’ll need your hands to take off your shoes in the long security-check queues…)

The Presurfer website highlights a device called The Hop:

“The Hop is a robotic suitcase that lets you go hands-free at the airport. Via the Bluetooth connectivity in your phone, the suitcase can follow its owner all on its own.”

We’re talking programmable “robotic” suitcases, we’re talking Bluetooth wireless control, we’re talking microprocessors, we’re talking caterpillar systems based on compressed air… What’s not to like?

Well, maybe you always have to be strolling comfortably and never hurrying. I like one of the comments left, by “Hundewanderer”:

It seems to be a slow mover, the man is strolling slowly. In my world, my connecting flight leaves in 2 minutes, the gate is 1/4-mile away in a crowded airport, and I’ve been given 30 seconds to get to my gate. I don’t think the suitcase would be able to keep up. Just sayin’

The Hop website writes:

Hop is a suitcase that follows the user. Represents the next generation of luggage, the following. The suitcase contains three receivers that are able to receive, identify and triangulate different signals coming from the user’s cell phone. A microcontroller interprets these signals calculating the phone’s position regarding to the suitcase. The same microcontroller operates a caterpillar system based on compressed air, which follows the user at a constant distance. If the signal is lost the user is alerted by the vibration of the phone and suitcase locks itself. The bags can be programmed to follow one to another or are controlled jointly by the staff that handles the baggage at airports or stations. If a suitcase can move by itself, besides facilitating the lives of a large number of travellers, families, disabled people, … could also spare all the elements that moves externally the baggage (conveyor belts , carts, …)

What are your thoughts? Leave a comment below.

[Via LikeCool]

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Tags: disabled people, microprocessors, next generation, signals, slow mover

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