In our world of technology, we get our inspiration from a variety of outlets; and most would think that our resource would be ignited through tech blogs and pubs. Not so this morning.
While enjoying my java overlooking Flathead Lake (a short scenic drive from our RoboGnoisis headquarters) I was reading a great publication, FARM SHOW, that is filled with stories about farmers who think as we do: “There’s got to be a better way to do things to improve the lives around us.”
Throughout FARM SHOW, there are pages about the latest inventions that are truly home grown. This one opened my eyes: “ROBOTIC CHICKEN COOP MOVES AUTOMATICALLY.”
After reading the story I know for a fact that unlike the idiom “For the birds” – which basically means whatever you’re describing is pretty much worthless – this time it does not apply.
Check this out: There’s this guy named Daniel (a farmer and mechanical engineer) who has a chicken farm and was tired of spending his life caretaking his chickens 24/7. He partnered up with his friend Katrina (another engineer) and together they invented ROVA: a solar powered chicken coop that moves automatically and carries a week’s worth of feed and water. Much like our robotic inventions at RoboGnosis, ROVA can be controlled by a smartphone – and this one is solar powered.
“Because it’s fully automated, I spend only five to ten minutes a day checking on my chickens,” said Daniel.
ROVA has many other impressive robotic features. “For safety sake, the unit signals a move by beeping to the side of where the coop will be moving. The chickens quickly figure out that when they hear the noise, they scurry to that side where the coop will be moving and voila – fresh grass.” Side awnings raise to provide shade and airflow when it is hot or lower to protect against wind and rain. When it is cold, they close up to retain heat. A driving rain on one side closes slats while the other side remains open to fresh air.
And that’s just the beginning of yet another example of how autonomous innovations are changing the world of farming, one home grown idea at a time, and for all the right reasons.