Perspectives

180° Shift: The End of Reality as You Know It

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  • Andy Lowery

Speaker

Andy Lowery
President, DAQRI


Lowery: Hello. Andy Lowery, president of DAQRI, formally of Raytheon, where I headed up the technology division of our electronic warfare business. And so you might ask, why is a former Raytheon executive heading up an augmented reality startup? Well, stay tuned, that’s the 180º twist that I’m going to work into my three minutes here.

If we look at augmented reality and virtual reality thus far, we seem to have a prevalence for people creating applications for those in the mobile and gaming communities. If you look at that, those consumers typically demand the highest quality of graphic content at the lowest price point. So if you look at that business model, it’s not very smart if in the other aspects of the world you say how is that going to add value, how is that going to bring money? So this has been sort of the paradigm of augmented and virtual reality for the last several years.

If you look at applications of augmented reality in the industrial space, we’re not looking at it as a market-generating kind of immersive type of thing. We’re looking at adding valuable information in a process-improvement style to existing industrial processes. So here’s an example of an HMI display that’s giving you relevant information on top of real world objects.

Let me give you an example. This is a shipbuilder out on the East Coast that has to shoot what’s called stud bolts. Anything you hang on a piece of metal has to be shot with one of these stud bolts. This process is done like this: first someone creates a three-dimensional design, they translate that to a two-dimensional piece of paper, they bring in a bunch of people to measure and do all of this work in order to figure out where to shoot these bolts, and then they put the stuff together. So a group of augmented reality folks that used some of our tools put together an application and in four days which took that same sort of a process in just directly the three-dimensional object, placed marks using a tablet along the wall, required no setup time, and then they did a calculation of the return on investment, $35 million per year. So four days of mobile programming and working with these tools resulted in a $35 million per year total savings for the company.

This is a wearable that DAQRI has just recently announced and putting on the market that is specifically designed from the ground up for these types of industrial applications. We stress performance and not cost, and we’re specifically designing and architecting the helmet for the industrial space. This isn’t your traditional cellphone consumer-facing product. This is the world’s first wearable human machine interface.

So what kind of savings have we shown? Independent studies, they show performance gains of up to 30 percent in the implementation of augmented reality work instructions in the workplace. And this is the really remarkable figure. It shows quality reduction errors up to 94 percent. In fact, a lot of the independent studies that have looked at how people make mistakes have shown that human error can be virtually eliminated by incorporation of work instructions that are directly placed on the space in front of them.

And so if we talk about the productivity improvements, we heard the earlier the panel talk about the power of 1 percent and just 1 percent of improvement in Coca-Cola’s top line, or bottom line, and how much money that equates to. These are some of those 1 percent figures. It’s the idea of networking through this productivity, people, data, and machines, and a concept called the Industrial Internet, augmented reality, and computer vision are germane and a pillar of what will be this emerging Industrial Internet.

Okay, so in conclusion I guess, I’ve told you already all about this. Imagine the implications, I guess, across this space. If we can eliminate quality errors and improve productivity by 30 percent, imagine the impact to the industrial market.

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