This Company Wants to Show how Humans and Machines Can Work in Harmony

OMRON’s CES 2019 booth shows how AI and Robotics can work with Humans, not against them, in the future.

This Company Wants to Show how Humans and Machines Can Work in Harmony
OMRON's FORPHEUS Robot

At CES 2019, automation specialists and robotics maker OMRON put on an interactive demonstration of the many ways humans and robots paired with AI will work together in the future.

FORPHEUS Teaches You How to Play Table Tennis

To showcase the integrated AI technology at the heart of OMRON’s product lines, called OMRON Sensing & Control + Think, the company brought back the extremely popular AI-empowered table tennis tutor the company introduced at last year’s CES, FORPHEUS.

FORPHEUS shows how the company’s vision of human-machine harmony in action. FORPHEUS learns from its interaction with the player to help improve their table tennis game. Rather than being a competitor, FORPHEUS encourages the player, readjusting its own game to keep the allow for longer rallies by the player, and offering coaching advice on how the player can improve.

This year's iteration of FORPHEUS has been upgraded over last year’s appearance, offering a greater range of motion, a quicker ball return, enhanced ball tracking capabilities, and a deeper, more personalized AI coaching experience.

“Many CES attendees voice that FORPHEUS is a fun and fascinating example of the harmony between humans and machines. Everyone wants to watch and play him, but only a few are able to receive a tutoring lesson,” says Nigel Blakeway, managing executive officer of OMRON Corporation.

“FORPHEUS is an excellent ambassador for the harmonious relationship between humans and machines and a strong demonstration of the dynamic AI and robotics technologies that are evolving the modern workplace.”

Factory Harmony Exhibit Demonstrates OMRON’s Vision on Factory Floor

OMRON’s other interactive exhibit at CES 2019 is Factory Harmony, a demonstration of what OMRON hopes will be the manufacturing floors of the near-future.

Conference goers interact with the Factory Harmony exhibit by working with OMRON’s robots to create a personalized product on a simulated factory floor.

Deron Jackson, Chief Technical Officer of OMRON Adept Technologies, believes that the exhibit embodies the vision the company has for the future of human-machine interaction.

“Our Factory Harmony exhibit demonstrates how humans and machines can work together to meet the demands of modern manufacturing, including flexibility and customization, traceability of products and a higher standard of worker safety.”

“Our vision of Factory Harmony is humans and machines working together to ensure constant improvements in productivity, efficiency, product quality, and more rewarding worker experience.”

The Benefits of Human and Machine Synergy

There has been a lot of concern about whether humans will be almost entirely replaced by machines in the workforce in the next couple of decades and OMRON has a lot of people that will need convincing, given our past experiences with automation and job displacement.

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Blakeway believes It’s possible. “OMRON’s founding principle is to improve lives and contribute to a better society. We believe that technology can serve that goal and that’s what we are demonstrating here at CES. Attendees are interacting directly with OMRON AI, robotics and automation and experiencing the harmony that can be achieved between humans and machines when technology is designed to unleash andaugment human potential.”

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