One real world use

Robert Connolly robert at linuxfromscratch.org
Thu Apr 29 14:36:02 PDT 2004


I have started helping engineer a waterjet saw (at work). Similar but a 
miniature version of this:
http://www.flowcorp.com/newsite/Products/integrated_flying_bridge.htm

Not commands, but work orders would be uploaded over wireless local network. 
Software would control the arm to direct the waterjet, with about 30 tons per 
square inch of pressure. Software would also control a suction device. The 
water allows for cold cuts, so steel and stone don't burn or discolor. The 
reason it will be miniature is because its for a specialized task, only one 
of them will ever be made, so the software isn't really distributed if I 
compile it natively. Often these machines run DOS. Linux would be more 
flexable; the gui would be easy to modify, additional tasks, like inventory, 
are easy to add. The hardware for this saw might take 2 years to build and 
test, the software is the last thing needed. It doesn't necessarily need to 
be a hardened machine, but there's a fair chance this machine will be online, 
so it needs some defense. In general the software will need to be failsafe. 
There's too much pressure and the material is too expensive for the saw to 
make mistakes because of the software. It can't crash. It would also be easy 
to convince these guys to send regular donations when they upgrade.




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