"Autonomous Land Surveyor" Drone Finalist In $3M Genius NY Competition
The five finalists in round three of the Genius NY Business Competition were announced in December 2018 and one of them wants to automate construction staking. Civdrone claims to increase productivity, speed production, and lower costs by automating land surveying services.
Civdrone develops fast, reliable and autonomous marking solutions on enterprise drones for the construction industry. Digitalizing and automating land surveying services will increase productivity and shorten time of construction while lowering its costs.
Genius NY is the world's largest business accelerator competition for unmanned systems. The program provides tools to help UAS startups to become successful, including access to advisors, connections, stipends, and other resources. It is funded with $5 million from NYS Empire State Development and from various contributing sponsors. The majority of that funding is dedicated to support expenses and prizes. According to the Genius NY website:
GENIUS NY is a year-long business accelerator that awards five finalist teams a total of $3 million in investments. In addition, the program offers incubator space, company stipends, advisors, resources, programming, and connections, making it among the largest competitions of its kind across the globe. GENIUS NY is focused on Unmanned Systems; software, hardware, analytics, IoT.
What do you think about this emerging technology? Are we on the verge of SkyNet robot surveyors or is this just another tool in the surveyor's toolbox?
I brought up this very topic about 5 years ago after staking grid for a 30M dollar mall redevelopment.
Its a great tool to use for easy peasy sites with no one present and no structures etc.
Modifying an offset with a beam or another offset with odd dimensions under a staircase etc will never fit this nor any other drones capabilities.
Overall, I see it as a tool like a brush hawg or a 4lb sledge with a specific set of circumstances at which it may excel at, but won't replace the decisions a Surveyor nor a field operator can create.
Lost me at the first thump of "house" beat playing automatically on their homepage. May they be forever plagued with uber-hipness and the undying need for bleeding edge tech.
...and, get off my lawn!
Neat idea... But I've never seen a construction site that looked like the one in the video. Clear, flat, empty, soft... Most of the jobs I've been on haven't fully been cleared, there is garbage/construction waste/debris all over the place, there is equipment zipping around, rocks or left over pavement/concrete... Plenty of surfaces that won't accept a gently pressed nail. As with anything, it will work great under flawless conditions. I get that they are working on it and it will improve greatly the longer they stay with it. It's cool. I don't do construction layout anymore, but if I did I wouldn't feel threatened yet. Also, it's hard enough to get an operator to not run down a 30" wood stake with fluorescent flagging flapping generously. Those nails won't last. And, having to scan the QR code of each nail to see what it would have said on a stake...? Not ready yet.
I wonder who prints those QR flags... And who lines them up correctly in the queue...
It might be time for me to update a comic I drew that was published in POB in 2003:
Maybe this one also:
There have been ground bots for years that lay out solar farms etc.
If it does the job, and meets the accuracy desired, then I cannot see any reason why someone would not want to use a tool where it makes sense. And setting out stakes does not expressly require a license.
There are a lot of "bots" already in work processes (especially in construction), not just the electro-mechanical types, but in automated software processes. We're not going to be able to will those away, or stop there being more. But we can prepare to become "coaches" or "conductors" for the bots to come. Hope it is OK to link something I just wrote on the subject.
"Things are only impossible until they're not!" - Jean-Luc Picard