Baking took on a whole new meaning and cultural status during the COVID-19 pandemic. As people found themselves stuck at home in order to physically distance themselves from others, they turned to traditional hobbies that killed time and filled bellies. One stone, two birds, you know how it goes. Of course, as we've seen with any other human activity, there inevitably comes a moment when we try to get a robot to do the same. The success rate varies, of course. In this case, a DIY machine made by YouTube content creator "Skyentific" had a simple job: make a cupcake.
The YouTuber tells his audience that he fell in love with cupcakes when he tried one for the first time after he left his previous job. With the help of Arduino, the open-source prototyping platform, Skyentific created a robotic baker that moves different pans around, gives you the option to fill a cup with dough through a tube, use an electric caulking gun for toppings, and can bake up to four cupcakes in one batch. They're not your typical cute cupcakes with star-shaped sprinkles and fluffy vanilla. But they taste great, he says.
"I have built the DIY machine (robot) which makes delicious cupcakes," Skyentific notes in his video description. "Everything is controlled with Arduino. The two stepper motors are responsible for moving cupcake from dough station to the cooking station (microwave oven) to the topping station. At first the machine was not working properly, but I managed to adjust everything to make it work."
Keep it simple — As Input has reported before, baking during quarantine is essentially about doing away with stress, not packing loads of it on. You don't need to complicate something as simple as making your own cupcake or baking sourdough. That said, if you're in the mood to make things a little more challenging and invigorating, don't hesitate to create your own cupcake machine. But you'll need to be more than comfortable with the high chance that your machine will fail repeatedly before it finally works. There's a charm to that kind of investment and hard work.
If you do end up making your own cupcake machine, let me know how it went. Maybe your cupcake will look better than Skyentific's chocolate mess.