or sometimes just a passing thought.

Office Worker Exoskeleton

on February 22, 2011

Date of Original Idea: Today

Exoskeletons are these futuristic like things that always seem to be just on the horizon for disabled people or soldiers or dock workers.  It’s a robotic looking device that someone climbs into or attaches to the body and is used walk far (or at all) or pick up heavy things or carry lots of stuff.  Some of them are becoming more and more realistic everyday.   Today’s idea is an extension of that into the white collar workforce, as if we got too much physical exercise as it was.   So a device that you climb up into and strap yourself it.  It has to make big whopmp-bumhp noises when walking, have hidden little places for storing office supplies all over it, like Robocop’s gun holster but with a three-hole-punch.  A laptop can dock into it.  A person could carry all the necessary binders and different parts and pieces that they work on all day (I had to lug around 3 transaxle adapters the other day and I could have used this).  Eventually desks could be eliminated and you just work in the last location you whopmp-bumhp’d to, presumably near the coffee machine.   No need to search out a wheely-cart for the big items, just a charging plug during the down time.

The obvious challenges:

  • Preventing serious hacking of the devices (not a bad idea by itself, but prevents work from being done)
  • Keeping them running.  Think what it’s like now when you have a computer problem, imagine if you’re stuck somewhere yelling for help.
  • Preventing the necessary arm wrestling and hallway races from turning into the office into some futuristic Mechwarrior-like landscape through warring factions and furniture throwing.

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