Traveling Forward With Autonomous Vehicles

Autonomous vehicles are rolling towards us at an amazing rate.  Even autonomous flying cars will be fluttering in our skies in just a few years.  With that said, you don’t have to wait to start using autonomous technology.  On today’s show, we are going to review our top picks of autonomous mowers and vacuum cleaners.  We will also chat about amazing advances in autonomous farm machines.  We will also be joined by a representative from PhotoSpring to talk about an amazing way to share photos and videos with loved ones.

Mission InSight Ready for Take Off

After a journey of 300 million miles, Interior Exploration Using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) will head for the surface of Mars on Nov. 26. The mission: Take to take a sonogram of Mars to hopefully reveal the planet’s size of the core, thickness of the crust and properties of the mantle. If all goes well, a heat shield, parachutes and a rocket engine will slow InSight to a safe landing in a flat plain just north of the Martian Equator known as Elysium Planitia.

When A Frame Meets An Album

PhotoSpring is both a digital photo frame and a digital photo album. It displays an entire collection of photos or you can select photos to be displayed as an entire album. The product automatically displays photos collected from your smart devices or computer. You can share photos and albums with family members through their PhotoSpring.

Weeding Out The Best

It’s no real secret at this point the future many of our least favorite jobs will be automated. While the pessimists routinely tout automation as the inevitable downfall of our entire economic structure, the optimists see the other side of this same coin.

The average American spends nearly 70 hours a year dealing with lawn care. It’s time to sit back and enjoy the scent of robotically-clipped blades of grass.

A Cut Above the Rest

HONDA MIIMO 3000 ($2,800) – The Miimo 3000 can handle angles up to 25 degrees and can mow up to an acre. It allows you to adjust cutting height, start or stop the unit, and also manage a calendar, all from your smartphone.

Worx Landroid ($910) – This robotic lawnmower uses an artificial intelligence algorithm to maneuver through narrow areas and mow in a seemingly haphazard pattern with minimal unnecessary overlap. A series of sensors helps the machine to avoid and mow around obstacles. The robotic lawnmower doesn’t like inclement weather so the unit will automatically disengage and return to its docking station to recharge until the weather has cleared.

Husqvarna Automower 450X ($3500) – Though there are cheaper robotic lawnmowers on the market, the 450X can cover up to 1.25 acres. You can schedule the mow times over the course of a given month, allowing the model to trim as regularly or minimally as desired. More regular mowings will minimize clippings for a cleaner-looking yard. This model runs quiet and is about as loud as an air conditioning unit.

Robomow RS630 ($2,500) – The Robomow RS630 can handle yards up to three-quarters of an acre, and even slopes up to 20 degrees. The model also has a rain sensor to keep the unit from sloppily mowing through wet grass. In addition, if the mower starts to run low on power, it will automatically return to base to recharge. With an operational decibel range of up to 78dB, this unit is certainly louder than the Husqvarna Automower 450X, but remains significantly quieter than your average riding lawnmower.

Robomow RX12 ($600) –  the RobomowRX12 is exclusively tailored to those with small yards and are limited to just one-twentieth of an acre and slopes less than 9-degrees steep. Unfortunately, this model has some limitations. As one could imagine, the RobomowRX12 lacks some of the options featured on other higher-end robotic lawnmowers. For example, this unit doesn’t work with a paired smartphone app, and there’s no rain sensor to prevent the Robomow RX12 from slashing through wet grass.

Robotic Vacuum  Picks

  1. Ecovacs Deebot N79S Review – $229.00
  2. Eufy RoboVac 11 Review – $219.99
  3. iRobot Roomba 960 Review  – $699.99
  4. Neato Botvac D7 Connected Review – $799.00
  5. iLife A4s Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review – $249.99
  6. iLife V8s Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review – $259.99
  7. iLife V8s Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review – $374.99
  8. Neato Botvac Connected Review – $699.00
  9. Neato Botvac D5 Connected Review – $599.00
  10. Dyson 360 Eye Review – $999.99

If you would like the “Guru of Geek” to do a product review and have it featured on The Tech Ranch, let us know! Leave us a comment on this episode or call 701-204-6674 for more information.

Join the “Guru of Geek” Marlo Anderson and “Tech Geezer” Jim Walsh every week for a new episode of the Tech Ranch.

Broadcast Date May 7, 2018 Episode 316

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Back to Mars, Onward to Estevan


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