Friday, May 21, 2010

Cool Technology of the Week

As readers of my blog know, I'm a big fan of flexible work arrangements , virtual presentations, and telepresence.

One limitation of all these approaches is that you lose the "over the cubicle effect" - the ability to wander around the office and chat with your colleagues.

The Texai robot is an attempt to merge teleconferencing with mobility and it's under development at Willow Garage . I encourage you to watch this video demonstration.

The project began as a solution to a problem. Two Willow Garage engineers, Dallas Goecker and Curt Meyers, working 2000 miles apart, needed a more efficient method of interacting and collaborating throughout the day. Skype and conference calls hindered the casual conversations more representative of day-to-day, in-person interactions around the office. Seeking a better solution, Dallas and Curt applied their knowledge of building battle bots and the PR2 to create Texai.

A teleconferencing solution that enables you to wander from meeting to meeting and cubicle to cubicle without having to worry about Skype, Webex, or ISDN lines. That's cool!

4 comments:

Scott Bussinger said...

You might be interested in this blog post from a remote Microsoft employee that created a similar sort of remote presence cart: http://www.hanselman.com/blog/BuildingAnEmbodiedSocialProxyOrCrazyWebcamRemoteCartThing.aspx

Marcus M. said...

How about using this approach for telepresence of clinical specialist (e.g. ICU physicians), that would otherwise not be available?

maybe said...

John.......Sorry to be a little off subject but you may enjoy an article about Kyoto by Pico Iyer in the current (June 2010) Smithsonian magazine.

I particularly enjoy your Thursday entries about life since my dermatology practice is relatively
low tech.

bruce

Sanford Dickert said...

Thanks for your enthusiasm - we are working hard to bring this to life. If you aare interested in learning more, send an email to texai-bizdev@willowgarage.com