Based on the insights from the first InflatiBits prototypes, we are currently in the development to simplify both, the fabrication of modules and extend their capabilities as a construction toy.
- We are adding new structural elements for orienting your built tentacles in 3d space. This eliminates the need, but not the possibility, of using Lego in your creations.
- Air pockets made from weldable fabrics. While silicone is commonly used in soft actuators, it is not well suited for toys. Due to its cost, tearability and complex time consuming manufacturing process. Initial experiments with weldable fabrics as a means to create low-profile and robust zero volume air-pockets have shown to deliver promising results.
- Integrated electronic control and sensing. In the first iteration prototype of our system, the electronic control blocks were treated as an optional add-on and rarely used by testers. We are currently developing a system that is much more integrated into the modules and focuses on achieving organic motions rather than building conventional robot like sensor-actuator systems.