Today, physical-digital interactions are gradually moving from traditional barcode, QR code, and active-sensor systems to a totally new world of Internet of Things (IoT). On a parallel move, robotic technology is becoming a logical candidate of getting a smoother real life continuation into the digital world. When combined these movements, IoT does not have to depend on static, dumb hardware anymore, but may walk, swim, even fly and finally be informed for decisions by real world object interactions.

On 6th February, The SLASSCOM Technology Forum together with TRACE, JS Meet-up, CodeGen and 99X Technology organized a full day workshop on entry level robotics targeting tech associates in the IT industry at the TRACE Expert City in Colombo.

“The aim of TRACE Expert City is to develop a knowledge-based techno-centric sustainable business hub, which will not only support the country’s research and development needs in its core sectors but will also support the nation’s long term economic, social and environmental development and growth”, Dr.Harsha Subasinghe shared at his presentation about the TRACE Expert City concept for the audience.

The goal of this workshop was to provide introductory knowledge into robotics and related technologies. Indaka Raigama, CEO of Navantis and Director of SLASSCOM presented an overview of the program and the importance of robotic technology in improving standards of human life. At the keynote, Prof. Rohan Munasinghe shared his knowledge and experience about the robotic technology research happening at University of Moratuwa.

The workshop began with two case studies shared by industry experts. Firstly, Robotic Technology at the VEGA project was demonstrated by Beshan Kulapala from CodeGen which ignited much interest among the audience. He explained how the organisation uses robotics technology for Sri Lanka’s first Electronic Car.
Next, Dr.Sankalpa Gamwarige expressed his ideas on Pragmatic Robotics used at Zone 24x7. He provided insights on how digital relationships between robots, people and things can embrace and improve our lives.

The presentations were followed by a hands-on lab session to create a simple robot that can take instructions to guide its behavior. During this workshop, Andrew Fisher, CTO of JBA (Australia) educated the participants on how to create a ‘Nodebot Robot’.

This event was part of SLASSCOM’s ongoing technology initiatives which aim to improve technology related knowledge and competences needed to drive Sri Lanka as a global knowledge services hub. SLASSCOM acts as a catalyst of growth of the Sri Lankan IT and BPM industry by facilitating trade and business, propagation of education and employment, encouragement of research and innovation, and by supporting the creation of a progressive national policy framework. Sri Lanka’s IT/BPM industry has set its vision to achieve USD 5 billion in exports by 2022 while generating 200,000 jobs and facilitating 1000 startups in the country.