back to article Who loves programming robots? Who wishes it was easier? Here comes Flowstate

Intrinsic, a robotics platform upstart founded in 2021 by Google's X "moonshot" research group, showed off its first product and announced a partner on Monday. The product, Flowstate, is more bankshot than moonshot – a bid to lay the groundwork for relevance and revenue for the biz. It's a low-code platform for designing, …

  1. martinusher Silver badge

    Never quite figured out why

    Believe it or not there's an industry standard for this sort of thing. Its called PLCOpen. Its quite old, I'd guess it dates back to the days when people who read schematics were far more common than those who could write and interpret scripts. Its pretty unwieldy to use (IMHO) -- programming by dragging and dropping blocks around and hooking them up as a schematic is both cumbersome and counter-intuitive.

    One product example I'm familiar with is called "Click & Move". This product looks similar.

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: Never quite figured out why

      I was just about to comment on PCL in general.

      PCL has to be about the easiest code I have ever seen.

      If someone finds PCL to be too difficult, they might want to find another line of work.

  2. My other car WAS an IAV Stryker

    Graphical "programming" has been around for years

    ...if you count the likes of Mathwork's Simulink (part of MATLAB) -- especially the Stateflow add-on -- and NI's LabView.

    Of course, compared to them, any cheaper solution would be welcomed by many (potential) customers.

    1. Caver_Dave Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Graphical "programming" has been around for years

      Or Signal Centre (for graphically assembling control systems), that was demonstrated to NI, who went quiet and about a year later brought out LabView.

      Signal Centre was eventually sold to a company called Intrinsic - but a different Intrinsic apparently.

  3. Robert Grant

    > Our mission is in short to democratize access to robotics

    The hard bit in this task is the robots, not the software.

  4. Ian Mason

    Talk about burying the lede!

    Are there no actual experienced editors left at The Register?

    Intrinsic, a robotics platform upstart founded in 2021 by Google's X "moonshot" research group, showed off its first product and announced a partner on Monday.

    The product, Flowstate, is more bankshot than moonshot – a bid to lay the groundwork for relevance and revenue for the biz. It's a low-code platform for designing, programming, and deploying automation control software for a broad spectrum of industrial robotics hardware, some of which can be had from partner and automation integrator Comau.

    Should have been:

    Intrinsic's Flowstate is a low-code platform for designing, programming, and deploying automation control software for a broad spectrum of industrial robotics hardware. Intrinsic was founded in 2021 by Google's X "moonshot" research group, and on Monday it announced Flowstate as its first product and also announced automation integrator Comau as a partner supplying robot hardware.

    Get the subject of the story into the first sentence of the first paragraph, not buried in the middle of the second paragraph.

    1. david 12 Silver badge

      Re: Talk about burying the lede!

      I don't think I agree with you. The Register is able to use "short paragraphs" as headlines, as they did in this case. A newspaper would have been limited to 4 or 5 words, but The Register was able to give us the whole story in the headline. What followed is context, in expanding order of detail.

      1. Francis Boyle

        Re: Talk about burying the lede!

        And if you cant read past two sentences to get to the gist you probably should stick to real red tops! /sarcasm

        Seriously, it's what the Register does and that's becoming a rare commodity in the age of AI content mills.

  5. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
    Alert

    Oh dear god

    Quote

    " Part of its reason for being is to make robotics programming accessible to people who aren't necessarily robotics experts."

    The reasons we're experts is that it is very very very very very expensive if things go wrong...especially if people get hurt

    The thought of a non-expert doing what I do fill me with utter dread, and I'm down the simple end of things.

    We had 1 near miss last week when 1 minor code got left off a new job being proved out, trouble is... if that ran at full speed we could easily have got stuff being ejected from the lathe at very high speed, its only because the experts know to set the machinery to 'slow motion' that things like that get caught.

    The thought of a non expert dragging and dropping stuff , then confidently going "full speed ahead....." eeeeekkk

    1. Caver_Dave Silver badge

      Re: Oh dear god

      And why certifiable Operating Systems are used!

      I have ported VxWorks for a very popular manufacturer's new controller.

  6. Philip Lewis

    Is this an English web site?

    It's "... wishes it WERE easier" ... language usage in print gets worse by the day. :(

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