In industrial automation tried and tested always beats latest and greatest: The machines that make smartphones have a serial port and are configured with .csv files. But when your factory automates complex non-linear workflows and is jam-packed with sensors and robots, you are quickly faced with software engineering challenges that call for modern tools.
Python turns out to be surprisingly versatile in this setting, whether for prototyping a single conveyor belt or taming a building full of robots. This talk explains how to use Python for interfacing with two common industrial automation devices: a barcode scanner and a Programmable Logic Controller (PLC). After a simple demo, you’ll hear about lessons learned using Python packages that weren’t written with robots in mind, like Celery and pandas, with robots.