Valve’s YouTube channel has released rather interesting video today. The video is a timelapse of a production process of Steam Controllers. Nothing out of the ordinary really for one really tiny detail. All the machines are labeled: “Aperture Laboratories”, and music in the background is the music from Portal 2 itself. Now whether or not Valve is trying to hint at a possible Portal 3 here or just decided that this would be a cool theme for their assembly line is unknown but that does make you wonder, why now?
When we first started designing hardware at Valve, we decided we wanted to try and do the manufacturing as well. To achieve our goal of a flexible controller, we felt it was important to have a similar amount of flexibility in our manufacturing process, and that meant looking into automated assembly lines. It turns out that most consumer hardware of this kind still has humans involved in stages throughout manufacturing, but we kind of went overboard, and built one of the largest fully automated assembly lines in the US. Our film crew recently put together a video of that assembly line, showcasing exactly why robots are awesome.
Here’s that showcase, where you can watch controllers being built entirely by robots. We aren’t crazy though, so humans are still on hand to keep the robots from becoming sentient.
Valve Fixed a bunch of issues reported from user feedback. Full list of changes:
Here is the song alone: