Great Robots Podcast interview with quadcopter genius and (now rich) co-founder of Kiva Systems

The always great Robots Podcast has a particularly good episode this week, from one of the co-founders of Kiva, the warehouse robotics company that Amazon just agreed to buy for $775 million. He also does some very cool stuff with quadcopters, which you may have seen some videos of but he explains a lot more in the interview. 

From the description:

Raffaello D’Andrea is Professor of Dynamic Systems and Control at ETH Zürich, and co-founder and chief technical advisor for US company Kiva Systems. His research focus is pushing the boundary of autonomous systems capabilities, with an emphasis on adaptation and learning.

He tells us about his first impressions following one of the biggest deals in the history of robotics, the acquisition of Kiva Systems by Amazon for an estimated USD 775M. D’Andrea was on the show in 2008 to talk about Kiva’s pioneering warehouse automation solution, which uses fleets of up to 1000 mobile robots to streamline the process of picking, packing, and shipping e-commerce products. We also look at work in dynamic systems out of his lab, including projects from the Flying Machine Arena (listen to a previous interview on the Distributed Flight Array) and a recent collaboration with Gramazio & Kohler on the construction of undulated brick walls using quadrocopters. We then dive into the Art scene with projects such as the Blind Juggling Machine, the Robotic Chair and Tableand finally take a step back to discuss the importance of fundamental research in engineering and strategies for translating knowledge in complex systems to industry.

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Comment by Jack Crossfire on March 24, 2012 at 1:48am

Considering most everything is selling for over $1 billion nowadays, the real value of $775 million has to be seen in perspective.

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