People who need custom furniture in the future may be able to feed the design into a program and then have robot-assisted carpentry do the rest.
MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory has been working on robots that can execute a design by cutting wood to specifications. Via MIT:
In an effort to minimize injury and let carpenters focus on design and other bigger-picture tasks, a team from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) has created AutoSaw, a system that lets nonexperts customize different items that can then be constructed with the help of robots. Users can choose from a range of carpenter-designed templates for chairs, desks, and other furniture. The team says that AutoSaw could eventually be used for projects as large as a deck or a porch.
For now, the user than has to assemble the parts like something from IKEA, but eventually they'll get those next-gen door-opening robots to that, too.
• AutoSaw: Robot Assisted Carpentry (via MIT)
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