Perspectives by different people vary. Sometimes a unique, idiosyncratic view is wrong but thought provoking. And it takes courage to write anyway. This is one of those.
Robotics company Anki announced that it’s shutting down, and close to 200 employees would be paid a week of severance. The company said it was left without “significant funding” to support its goals.
“Despite our past successes, we pursued every financial avenue to fund our future product development and expand on our platforms,” a company spokesperson said. “A significant financial deal at a late stage fell through with a strategic investor and we were not able to reach an agreement. We’re doing our best to take care of every single employee and their families, and our management team continues to explore all options available.”
Sad to see. I remember first seeing Anki announced at Apple’s keynote back in 2013.
Max Pedró is an eCommerce and financial services entrepreneur. Today, Max is the Co-Founder and President of Takeoff Technologies Inc.
Takeoff Technologies aims at transforming on-line grocery retailing by developing a marketplace of efficient automated robotic fulfillment centers to solve the cost and immediacy issues of grocery shopping.
I asked Max all the tough questions about having a robot pick groceries off the shelves and prepare for pickup or delivery. What about customer preferences for just the right piece of fruit or cut of meat? What about perishables? What about the security of the iOS app? Will they sell customer data? Can we use Apple Pay? And finally, how does the grocery chain obtain an ROI? Max has the answers in this fascinating interview.
Business Insider writes: “Toyota built Cue 3 to demonstrate the robot’s use of “visual feedback” when shooting. Cue 3 can’t run, dribble, or execute the other fundamentals necessary to play alongside humans.” But maybe soon! And the skills demonstrated here will, no doubt, someday be absorbed into more well-rounded robots. (Image credit: BI/Toyota.)
All hail nerd humor! This little clip is funny, poignant, and well executed. Note the safety glasses perched atop the robot’s arm to better personify the device. And my favorite thing is the mic drop at the end. Definitely good stuff.
Bryan Chaffin and John Kheit don their futurist caps and look for the killer app in Augmented Reality. Spoiler: they have different ideas on what form it might take. They also explore the near-term future of practical robots, starting with today’s vacuumbots. They cap the show looking at the slow pace of progress when it comes to modern cabling. Let’s get that Cat 8 and 40 GB/s throughput!
As bits and pieces of robot dexterity come together, soon we’ll see some remarkable robot athletes. It’s a glimmer of things to come. The Verge writes:
MIT is back with the latest version of its Cheetah quadrupedal robot, the Mini Cheetah, and it’s got a new trick up its sleeve: it can do backflips.
Apple is a company we trust. Personal robots can be scary. Who better to earn our trust in robots than Apple?
This episode is all about robots! Apple robots, military robots, delivery repots, preacher robots, manufacturing robots, and self driving car robots! Bryan Chaffin is joined by guest host John Martellaro to deep into what’s happening with robots today and what they expect for robots in the future. Put your SciFi futurist cap on for this one. They also talk about foldable phones, or as they like to think of it, the netbook of 2019.
We know that robots will take jobs from humans. (We will adapt.) But the one job that seemed safe has been religious leaders: ministers, priests, rabbis, etc. But wait. The Telegraph writes:
A 400-year-old temple in the deeply traditional Japanese city of Kyoto has unveiled a robotic deity to deliver Buddha’s teachings in a bid to reach younger generations of Japanese.
Looks like I was wrong. (Image credit: The Telegraph via Japan Times)