Making Smart Tools Work For Everyone


Advances in AI are shaping the future of work, but how can we ensure that employees, organizations, and society will benefit from the changes? Instead of automating tasks, which can reduce or eliminate the need for human workers, this project seeks to design smart hand tools that leverage embedded sensing, the Internet of Things, and AI. These capabilities provide real-time feedback, improve predictive capacity, and support task effectiveness, which empowers workers to accomplish more while keeping their jobs secure. Smart hand tools will help address the middle-skill worker gap by improving workers’ safety in trades such as welding and enable more equitable access to jobs by minimizing the amount of training needed and promoting usability across workers with a wide range of ages and abilities.

This project is supported by funding from Microsoft. 

Team Members


Dec. 15, 2023
Where Sparks Fly: Transforming Welding with AI-powered Hand Tools
In the specialized world of welding, where sparks fly and metal literally melts, the marriage of artificial intelligence and human craftsmanship is revolutionizing the landscape. "Making Smart Tools Work for Everyone" — one of Good Systems’ six core research projects — is focusing on empowering workers with the aid of smart hand tools and challenging the prevailing narrative of job loss due to automation. 
May 3, 2023
AI Project at UT Austin Focuses on Developing Beneficial, Ethical Artificial Intelligence
While a lot of attention has been focused on ChatGPT, which allows a user to input information and get a response, UT researchers are working on several other ways A.I. can be used in schools.