Dexai Robotics: graphical user interface for robot operation

Meet Alfred, an automated robotic arm and your personal sous chef! Alfred was born at Dexai Robotics, while SumatoSoft developed a graphic user interface (GUI) that helps to communicate with the robot!

screenshot dexai

Project details:

 

 

About the Client:

There was a robotic arm named Alfred, but only robotics and software engineers could communicate with it. The Client didn’t have a user-friendly interface that sends commands to the robot or monitors its state. The company planned to sell Alfred to restaurants and reached out to the SumatoSoft team to develop a platform with GUI for interaction between restaurant personnel and multiple robots.

  • Client: Dexai Robotics
  • Location: Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  • Industry: HoReCa / Restaurants & Hotels / Hospitality
  • Team size: 1 Project Manager, 1 Account manager, 1 Designer, 1 Software Architect / Tech Lead, 2 Middle / Senior developers
  • Project duration: 2 years

Business сhallenge

We were expected to build a user interfaces for communication with Alfred. However, not all restaurant workers are native English speakers. Thus, GUI must be intuitive, informative, and simple so every restaurant worker can understand the current Alfred state or an error just at first sight on the screen.

Additional requirements:

  • offline operation;
  • built-in user management system;
  • robot state and actions monitoring;
  • sending commands to robots;
  • POS systems integration;
  • managing the order queue;
  • error/edge cases handling.

Our solution

React JS was chosen as the main technology for the GUI application, and Ruby on Rails was chosen as the backend technology. The main reason behind this decision was that they were well suited for the rapid prototyping and startup environment we worked in. The initial architecture included several microservices with HTTP communication. These microservices were React UI application and Rails backend server, written in Python. During the development of the first version, a number of revisions were made both to the requirements and our final solution.

User interface revamp

The most complex part of the application involved adapting to the changing requirements and transitioning from the initial Rails server architecture to a message broker system using RabbitMQ for inter-microservice communication. This allowed for immediate display of robot state changes, command sending, and error handling from the robot side.

Additional features:

  • built-in user management system;
  • robot state and actions monitoring;
  • sending commands to robots;
  • error/edge cases handling.

Business value

Before:  

  • The robotic arm, Alfred, could only be operated by engineers, limiting its practical application in restaurant settings.
  • Limited capability in handling multiple robots and integrating with existing systems.  
  • The system lacked the ability to operate without global internet connectivity, limiting its use in various environments.
  • The product’s complexity and engineer-centric design hindered its presentation to investors, as it couldn’t be demonstrated as a user-friendly solution for non-engineers.

After:  

  • The developed GUI made Alfred accessible to restaurant staff, enabling intuitive command sending, performance monitoring, and error handling.
  • The solution provided multi-robot management, POS system integration, and a user-friendly interface for restaurant operations.
  • The system’s design incorporated solutions for better handling of offline scenarios, ensuring more robust and consistent performance across diverse restaurant environments.
  • The developed platform, with its user-friendly interface, facilitated successful presentations to investors, showcasing Alfred as an innovative, accessible culinary solution.

Have an app idea?
Let’s start with a free quote!

Let’s start
You are here
1 Share your idea
2 Discuss it with our expert
3 Get an estimation of a project
4 Start the project
If you have any questions, email us [email protected]


    Please be informed that when you click the Send button Sumatosoft will process your personal data in accordance with our Privacy notice for the purpose of providing you with appropriate information. This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
    Thank you!
    Your form was successfully submitted!