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Sci-Fi Fridays #6: Autonomous Process Design
(Apologies for the delay this week!)
Reminder: For the next several Fridays, we are going to provide a writing prompt based on a technology we think is ripe for a coordinated research program. In the comments, we want you to create a piece of flash fiction that includes the prompt technology in some way! At the end of the eight weeks, we’ll pick a first, second, and third place winner through a combination of likes on posts and program manager discretion. These people will receive one of Spectech’s “core books” that we send to people who join.
Autonomous Process Design. Researchers have done significan work on our ability to autonomously design the outputs of manufacturing processes. Examples include antennas, high-end car parts, and materials. But figuring out the process steps to create these outputs, especially at scale, is still an incredibly manual process. Even for products that are as simple as a folded piece of metal (which is used for a shockingly large array of products), figuring out the steps to make them is done by hand on a drafting table. This bottleneck is one of the reasons that retooling a factory is such a big endeavor.
It might be possible to build much better tools for autonomously going from output to the process that creates it.
Hints: seamlessly scalable manufacturing processes, factories that can be retooled in a day, the ability to spin up a manufacturing line without any specialized knowledge.
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