How Hard Is It To Learn Industrial Robot Programming at Home?
Want to learn to program industrial robots at home?
In this post I’m going to share some insights into the career field and why now is the best time to jump into this field. I’ll also share my thoughts on what the market is for skilled professionals, what you need to become a professional and how to learn it at home.
The Opportunity of a Lifetime Starts Today!
In today’s growing technology fields few give you a home court advantage in training for an incredible career as well as robotics does.
To begin with there is an explosion in the robotics world unlike anything the world has ever seen, for example in the domestic market, super store shelves like Walmart are being filled with kids ‘DIY’ robot kits. Which introduces the idea to the consumer about and brings the concept into their homes.
Then there’s the commercial companies like McDonalds who have plans to put robots in their restaurants to cook customers food and then there’s the industrial market that’s buying a record number of robots in North America, with a growing number of the non-automotive industries gobbling up that inventory.
So, in short, the market is there and it’s growing, as matter of fact its exploding!
But how can a person break into the engineering and service side of that market?
That’s where the home court advantage comes in, with today’s tech growth and internet reach virtually, anyone can train to become an industrial robotics engineer from home.
Now, just so were clear, in my opinion this opportunity has a limited window and will eventually close.
The opportunity to learn at home may go away, the robotics industry may standardize and require everyone to receive a certificate from some University or trade school which may require a 4-year degree or experience through extended training periods.
All that before any company will hire you as a robotics engineer or technician.
Buts as of now, with the opportunity to learn programming from home and employers desperately needing robot programmers it’s an opportunity unlike any in history or in the future, if I am right.
What do you need to learn to be a robotics engineer?
Start by reading my post Insiders Guide to Become a Robotics Engineer then begin with the right perspective, for one regardless of rather you have a degree or not, you really need to learn how to program a robot and often that is the only factor necessary before receiving a job offer, but not in all cases as some companies want that pedigree.
A degree in the eyes of many employers lets them thin the herd of applicants, it also helps them make certain snap judgments about their candidate regarding education level, and level of commitment.
For example, an employer or for that matter every employer will have to open their business to you and bare their ‘how to’ in addition they will need to make time and cost investments to get any new employee up to speed.
Therefore, an applicant who has completed 4 years at a university appears to have the intellect and commitment to be worth an investment.
On the other hand, as I have said many times before; having someone who can do the job often trumps pedigree.
“A robotics simulator is used to create application for a physical robot without depending on the actual machine, thus saving cost and time.”
I Can Develop a Program in 20 Minutes?
So even if you can learn to program from home, isn’t it hard to do?
The simplicity of programming using a teach pendant is an example of the ease at which anyone with little more than 20 minutes experience can literally develop a program that works on a real robot.
Now a 20 minute program wont be very complex, but it will work for sure.
You might start with the teach pendant, which is a hand-held tool used in the real-world used to type in or command the robot to move in the direction you choose, once moved to a location of your choice its location can be recorded.
And once several moves have been strung together a complete program can be created, it’s that simple with a teach pendant.
However, if that is not simple enough for you many of the world’s top robotics manufacturers offer software that runs a virtual robot that can be programmed to simulate the real-world. (I have links below)
With today’s technology and modeling software a robot developer has the ability to simulate a working cell layout, an envelope for the robot to work inside and the ability to remotely create, edit and modify its programming, and then download that program into a real-world robot to be used in production.
It’s having the ability to simulate a real robot or multiple robots in a virtual work cell to run using code that is created in this virtual world and is tested via simulation and that can be downloaded into a real robot that differentiates today’s opportunity compared to yesterdays.
Now the good news is that anyone, anywhere in the world can get their hands on a copy of simulation software like Fanuc’s RoboGuide and ABB’s RobotStudio two of the world’s top robotics manufacturers that gives you this unprecedented opportunity.
As for the difficulty, I won’t say its cheese cake easy, however with a little experience and practice anyone can create a basic program.
And a serious student learning to program industrial robotics at home can create a professional level program in mere hours, using a real-world pendant on the job or at home with the offline simulation software offered by many robot OEM’s.
Some Resources For You
If your serious about learning more take a look through the resources I’ve listed below and if you have any further questions just go to the contact page and reach out to me.
In your free time watch some videos, get some software, complete some projects and then add them to your resume.