What are these guys trying to do??
We are trying to save the future for the humans. With the relentless and unchecked automation of everything we do, we are trying to remind people that technology was invented to improve our quality of life, and that doesn't always mean just doing everything for you. Sometimes that means doing something really, really challenging. Sometimes that means taking on something that many have dreamed of, but no one has dared try before. Like building and learning to pilot a two story tall, 3500kg walking machine that you use your whole body to control, without computers to help you.
We are all volunteers dedicated to this cause, and building Prosthesis is something we strongly believe in. We believe that there are plenty of companies developing robots out there, and that's cool, but in order to preserve the balance between humanity and our technology, in order to be reminded that some of life's most gratifying experiences are earned, we need an anti-robot. We need an example of heart pounding hyper technology that puts the humans in pilot seat! We need Prosthesis: The Anti-Robot, and we need your help!
What is the point?
Well, aside from the above mentioned mission to create an unprecedented human experience for all those who are fortunate enough to ride the machine (and this campaign may be your only chance be one of them!), we are also benefiting our local community and the community at large.
We work closely with universities here and abroad to create for-credit projects for students. Over the last 3 years of developing this technology, we have mentored over 30 engineering and design students in a learning environment that simply cannot exist in a commercial context. Our entire team is made up of skilled volunteers, ranging from engineers, to fabricators to video game designers. Gathered under the roof of the eatART Foundation, an educational non-profit , the community surrounding this project is a rich and unique learning environment, for students and professionals alike.
Beyond the immediate benefits to those directly involved in building such an absurdly ambitions project, we also take these projects to schools, science fairs and technology festivals to get people excited about what can be done with the creative application of engineering. The shear madness of taking on this world-first, without a business model, or corporate funding, serves as an inspiration those around the world with their own dreams. In a way, the success of this project represents the success of every impassioned maker, tinkerer or dreamer out there who's ever had a great idea but been told..."How are you gonna to that? You're nuts."
Just ask visual effects legend Phil Tippett (no relation to project leader Jonathan Tippett). He did effects for Star Wars, Jurassic park and RoboCop. He knows the value of an inspired imagination.
"How are ya gonna do that?"
Oh, we're gonna do it alright. In fact, we're already well on our way. For starters, we are no strangers to making giant walking machines. We've already done something like this before when we built the Mondo Spider, a 750kg, human piloted mechanical spider.
With what we learned about leg design, hydraulics, electric power systems and human controls, we have a huge head start to making Prosthesis a reality. In fact, we've already built one, fully functional, 2:3 scale prototype leg, complete with a positional feed back exo-skeletal control system, real-time pilot tunable suspension and a 50kW (65hp) 100% electric power plant. It's called the Alpha Leg, and it's already jumping! Here's a really early video of it before the electric conversion.
If you want to see where it is now, check out the tech tour in our updates!
Below is a rendering showing it next to Prosthesis to get a sense of scale and context.
The Alpha Leg has proven the technology and galvanized the team. There are no major technical hurdles between the dream and the reality. We paid for the Alpha Leg out of our own pockets and with support from eatART, local universities and some generous hardware donations from companies who believe in what we are doing. But we can't finish the machine with what we have. We need help from a larger audience. It will take an international village to bring the baby to life. It will take you.
What do you get out of it?
You get to be part of history (and maybe even a ride in the machine!) This project is born out of passion, with the purpose of expanding the scope of human experience. It's not for war, or money, or fame. It is to explore. Imagine if the moon mission was crowd funded and you'd chipped in. You'd feel pretty cool right about now. Especially if you had an original Apollo sticker, t-shirt or beer mug...or your name was written on the capsule! All these can be yours for this giant leap for human kind!
Check out the various ways you can show that you were part of the anti-robot revolution from the very start!
Sponsor a part of the machine!
Whether its a bolt for two bucks, a shock for forty bucks or a whole leg for a couple of grand, you can become part of the permanent record of the creation of the worlds first 100% human controlled racing robot! We'll put your name on our on-line drawings for all the world to see, and when we are doing our world tour, you can say "I helped built that thing!"
Original 30" x 40" artwork
Local Vancouver artist, Dallyn Rule is producing a stunning depiction of Prosthesis in its future race setting. Here it is just partially completed....This one of a kind piece, or a limited edition print, could be yours!
MORE REWARDS COMING SOON! HAVE A REWARD YOU WANT TO SEE? LET US KNOW!
How we're gonna spend it.
The money we raise is all going to go to purchasing critical materials and components:
High tensile chromoly steel - $18,000: Up to 5000 lbs of it to be precise.
Hydraulic pumps, hoses, cables, fittings, etc. - $20,000: The muscles of the machines. Without these it wouldn’t move.
Electronics components - $7,000: To control and regulate the hydraulic and power systems. The human is still in control!
Lithium Ion Batteries - $20,000: When your building a machine from the future, your power plant should also be from the future. No internal combustion permitted.
Tooling - $15,000: Specialized welding, fabrication and electronics tools and services, like water jet curring to turn raw steel into a functional machine.
Custom Trailer - $10,000: You can't just go to the local trailer shop and pick up a "giant robot" trailer. No point in making it if we can't share it!
Work Space - $10,000: Space has been heavily subsidized by the eatART Foundation, but we're going to need to up-size to complete this monster.
Stretch goals - Pushing the envelope.
There is no such thing as too much money when it come to high performance racing machines. We need to reach our funding goal of $100,000 to build the base model of the Anti-Robot, but with more money we can upgrade Prosthesis to be faster, stronger, better.
$150,000 - THE SPORT MODEL - A bigger lithium ion power pack, larger electric motors, more durable hydraulic components will allow the machine to run faster and last longer. We may even be able to afford to make a few choice components of titanium or carbon fibre. Fuzzy dice.
$200,000 - THE FULL RACE MODEL - This is the sport model taken to the extreme. More advanced materials like carbon fibre and titanium will provide and a massive overall reduction in weight that will let us run farther, faster, longer. Safety and impact absorption systems will by upgraded accordingly.
$300,000 - THE TRAVELING RACE TEAM - This will allow us to take the FULL RACE MODEL on the road reliably and much farther from home. With a custom covered trailer, mobile pits and tech trailer, we'll be able to demonstrate Prosthesis across the continent and beyond to inspire the next generation of robot racers.
Beyond the money - the community.
Be a part of the Anti-Robot revolution! Even if you don't live in Vancouver, and can't spend your evenings and weekends covered in hydraulic fluid at the eatART lab, there are still contributions you can make to help make Prosthesis a reality.
What can I do? I'm just one humanoid?
First off, and easiest - Share our campaign via social media! Like us on Facebook, share our campaign post, retweet one of our tweets or subscribe to our YouTube channel for video updates
But I Have So Much More To Give!
We're always looking for materials contributions. Work for a lithium-ion battery supplier, we want to talk! Are you a kick-ass web-developer, an amazing illustrator, a 3D modelling master or a ninja in some other discipline you think could be useful (Or are even an actual ninja) get in touch and we'll find a way to work together.