Team Kegbot’s Kegbot Android-based kegerator (via kegbot)
I think it is time I put Drinkmo on Kickstarter. This bot is already doing so well...
Like any sporting event, spectators gather together to watch their favorite teams and those spectators will surely become hungry and thirsty at some point, which is where a cold refreshing beer becomes a real crowd pleaser. Sometimes however, those sporting events are watched from home and as a result, kegerators are becoming increasingly popular. Kegerators are tiny refrigerators (like those found in most college dorm rooms) that hold a keg of beer and have a hole cut into the top that is fitted for a tap. Unfortunately, kegerators do not usually come with an attractive bartender to serve that frosty goodness and to monitor how many drinks you have had and how much beer is left in the keg. Until then, we will just have to use Team Kegbot’s Kegbot Android-powered kegerator, which is interesting to say the least.
Kegbot employs a tablet, which acts as the brains of the device as well as the user interface. A corresponding app monitors how many pints have been poured and estimates how much beer is left in the barrel so users know when they are getting close to having to switch out the keg. It also monitors who is using it and how many pints they have poured and saves all that information in a database that can be accessed from anywhere (so you know who’s chugging your brew while your away). The tablet interface also allows for assigned ‘drinker accounts’ that can be accessed by individuals using RFIDs or iButtons and will alert friends in social groups know when you’re ‘hitting the sauce’. The Kegbot functions by combining a flow sensor that is coupled with an Arduino-based micro-controller that are connected to the kegs tap hose to monitor the flow of beer. Both devices are then plugged into the tablet where the corresponding Kegbot app work’s its magic. While there are other kegbot-like systems floating around on the internet that make use of Arduino-based controller boards and shields, they can be both time consuming and expensive to put together. Team Kegbot’s Kegboard Pro Mini combines the controller and the shield into one small easy to connect package to get the suds flowing. To get their Kegbot off the ground for production, the team turned to Kickstarter to get their controller manufactured for the beer-swilling masses all over the globe. It must have struck a high-note with brew consumers as Team Kegbot surpassed their initial goal of $15,000 to over $46,000, which says a lot about the dedication of those consumers and their love for frothy goodness. Those who missed out on getting a Kegbot of their own through funding can head over to Team Kegbot’s website to get the plans to build your own, which costs about $75 to $100, assuming you already have the little kegerator fridge and the tablet.
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