Actuator

Optimus Not-Ready-for-Prime-Time?

So, yeah, kicking off another installment of the newsletter by talking a bit about our upcoming robotics event. Honestly, this panel is a special one, though. It’s one I’d been thinking about befo

Any port in a storm

We’ve got a big event coming up on July 22nd. That means, among other things, that we’ve been hard at work on programming for a few months now. Honestly, the most difficult part of the process for

Series sea

Nursing is a tough job even in non-pandemic years (remember those?). Stress, burnout, exhaustion are all words one associates with the gig. I’ve seen a number of surveys conducted over the past year

Dough, drones, bananas and berries

I last spoke with Bill Peduto over the summer. It was an exit interview of sorts, closing out eight years serving as Pittsburgh’s mayor. This week, Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) announced that th

Hiveminded

Earlier this week, a video surfaced of a robot dog walking down the streets of Shanghai with a bullhorn strapped on its back. There are those who will, no doubt, view it as a kind of apocalyptic visio

Such great heights

The old Gmail inbox is overflowing with agtech pitches, and frankly I only have myself to blame after bringing it up the last two newsletters (damn, just did it again, didn’t?). As for where this wh

To Servi man

A nice secondary effect of writing this newsletter is getting an influx of responses when I write on a specific topic. Last week it was agtech. I expressed a bit of disappointment in the category. So

As the worm turns

Here’s something for you to mull over this fine Thursday morning: Do agtech robotics need a reset? Granted, we’re dealing with a small sample size here, but a string of news items over the past ye

Putting the autonomous cart before the robotic horse

I’m writing this fresh off hosting TechCrunch Live this week with Jonathan Hurst of Agility Robotics and Bruce Leak of Playground Global. I’ll be posting more about the session later this week, bu

More automatons about buildings and food

As I noted last year, we’re ramping up to return to Boston this July for our TC Sessions Robotics event. Our March 2020 event on the Berkeley campus was the last major in-person TechCrunch show befo

Vertical integration

No South by Southwest for me this year. No drinking weird promotional energy drinks while watching bands play front yards at 9 AM or traveling out of my way to see the Daniel Johnston mural on the sid

Super Bowl, Spot

Funny how these things arrive in fits and starts. Last week’s newsletter left me stumbling to cram everything into the allotted column space. Things are considerably more quiet this week, which can

Over the borderline

Way back in the before times of 2018, Ayanna Howard joined us onstage at our Robotics event to discuss human-robotic interactions, along with UC Santa Cruz’s Leila Takayama and Veo Robotics’ Patri

The robotic arm of the law

It’s hard to know where to start this week. Any temporary slowdown we might have experienced over the holidays has been wiped away. Once again, we find ourselves knee deep in robotics news, like the

Pay Misty for me

I’ve met with Misty’s founders a number of times over the years, often in hotel suites at CES where the company was showing off their humanoid robot’s latest capability. The firm started life in

The year of living autonomously

Even in the era of the virtual event, it tends to take me a few days to recover from the whirlwind of CES. Frontloading the year’s big hardware news is a bit less than ideal, but perhaps the changin

Consumer Robotics Show

CES has always been a weird show for robotics. That’s not an indictment of the show itself, so much as a comment on the state of robotics generally. It’s true the organization behind the show drop

New Year’s robolutions

This is always a strange week — that liminal space between the Christmas holiday and New Year. Romjul — or “Dead Week” — as they call it in Norway (thanks Haje). It’s a time fo

Dinner is servoed

I’ve been up to my neck in CES planning — and, I suppose, unplanning this week. There’s a strange disconnect getting pitches for the one millionth UV light sanitizing robot while you’re we

Treat every day like Boxing Day

Oh, hey, before we get started this week, I’m excited to finally be able to tell you that TC Sessions: Robotics has been announced for next year, and we’re returning to the East Coast! I’ve been
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