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Australian design team unveils Robotic Kitchen


June 4, 2004

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Imagine having a pantry that would talk to the refrigerator and the oven to co-ordinate and prepare meals, all while you dished out the orders from a computer terminal in the office. That's the scenario proposed by the iK (integrated kitchen), a design concept that explores the possibilities of future domestic kitchens by incorporating digital technologies and refined robotics into an extremely compact yet functional space.

Based around a central cylindrical tree that enables the separate physical components of the unit to be linked, the iK's overall dimensions are just 1.8m wide x 0.8m deep x 2.1m high.
Inside, a dishwasher and oven unit that also stores crockery and utensils is positioned at the bottom centre with pantry and refrigeration units to each side. This section contains the food banks that facilitate the autonomous preparation of meals with ingredients moved back and forth via the central cavity.

The modular iK design enables personalisation of the kitchen space and a built-in browser monitors food stocks and processes. Online access to this data also means that you can check if there's enough milk before you leave for home.

Currently a full 3d CAD model concept, the iK responds to the time and space pressures that accompany high-density living according to its creators, Melbourne based Charlwood Design.

Visit the Charlwood Design site at www.charlwood.com.au for further information and links to design resources.

About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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