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Innovation in small things - Robo ruler

Innovation in small things - Robo ruler

Odysseas Economides |

When it comes to designing a product we always like to add at least a drop of innovation to it. Meet the Robo Ruler.




The Robo Ruler is made of the same material that most electronics boards are made of. Examples include your PC motherboard, your mobile phone's board, or your laptop's electronics. The material is called FR4. FR-4 is a composite material composed of woven fiberglass cloth with an epoxy resin binder that is flame resistant. Specifically, the Robo Ruler is made of FR4-Standard Tg 140C.




The ruler's dimensions were selected to be pleasant to the human eye, with a width to height ratio of 15:2. We wanted to create a ruler that feels slim, with not so much height like the usual rulers have.

The edges were rounded just a bit, to give a warmer look but not too much to lose the rectangular shape of a usual ruler.

On the backside, there is a placeholder to note, preferably with a permanent marker, the owner of the ruler.




We don't know why most rulers are designed with extra padding on the start and the end but we were always annoyed with that!

That's because you simply cannot measure the distance from another object:

The Robo Ruler starts exactly at 0mm and ends at 150mm.

During the designing phase, we came up with the question: "Why do all small lines that indicate the millimeters have to be of the same size? It is definitely hard to distinguish them. Why not change that norm?"

And that's how we came up with the idea to change the length of the lines indicating millimeters, every 5mm, with the middle line of 5mm to be dashed 🚀

Actually, when you use the Robo Ruler for a while, you start to distinguish the millimeter lines easily and measure instantly, without needing to count the millimeter lines!




If you noticed, the ruler hosts 15x 100Ω 1W resistors 😃. There is a start pad on the very left side of the ruler and an end pad on the very right side of it.

You can easily select a value between the range of 100Ω to 1500Ω, increased by steps of 100Ω, using two crocodile clips attached on the pads around the ruler!

The resistors have a double role, not just to be used in electrical circuits but also to give a tight, firm grip when you hold the ruler down. That ruler won't slip out easily.




Three tables on the back display information on the most common surface mount component sizes, wire gauges, and PCB trace widths:


We are eager to see how the maker community will use it in electrical circuits. Comment below for cool, out-of-the-box ideas that come up to your mind for the Robo Ruler V2! One ruler to rule them all 🚀


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