What is the most immediate challenge you have at startup ecosystem level that you would like automation to help solve?

What is the most immediate challenge you have at startup ecosystem level that you would like automation to help solve?

[ 20/April/21 ]

In New Zealand that would be a trap that catches mammals – particularly mice, rats, cats, hedgehogs, ferrets, stoats, weasels, rabbits, possums and hares; catches them alive, then takes a photo of what is caught so that someone can determine whether it needs to be killed or released, then does the killing or releasing, then resets and rebaits.

Ideally it would be solar powered and only need servicing once a year.

Would be nice if it could report on larger animals too – deer, chamois, tahr, goats, wallabies, dogs, sheep – particularly in the alpine areas.

The problem is that the native birds that we are trying to protect tend to be extremely inquisitive and will investigate anything in their territories. The Kea in particular are a very smart parrot that can dismantle almost anything (and often do).

The next challenge would be a solar powered weeder that would roam the countryside, identify plants, and exterminate those that did not belong. Such a device would have application in cropping as well. It would need to be able to travel over steep terrain, and the cutter/digger part would need to be able to go 100m or so away from the power collector part (probably with power and comms cable link) – to get into the tricky places on cliffs, and go under canopy. So a multi-legged walker/gripper is probably necessary, with reasonably advanced mapping and plant ID abilities built in.

Both devices need to be able to be built relatively cheaply, operate reliably, and eventually be deployed at landscape scale (200,000 km2).

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) with reasonable security, tools, resources and degrees of freedom, and reasonable examples of the natural environment; and that is going to demand responsibility from all of us - see www.tedhowardnz.com/money
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