Robohub.org
 

So long, and thanks for all the bots!

by
12 February 2013



share this:
Robohub - PR2 waving

So, depending on who you ask, Willow Garage is shutting down, pursuing commercial interests, or changing direction. But things are not as dire as some may think: ROS is fine (the OSRF will support it) and there are many options for Willow Garage to explore. Personally I’m hoping it will be snatched up by Stanford or another academic institution and become a research institute. But given the number of robots they have out (and their price tags!), a commercial path into the future seems even more likely. In any case, I doubt that Willow Garage will disappear just like that.

What caused the changes is that Willow’s founder and funder, Scott Hassan, has decided that it’s time to wean Willow Garage from his private financial support.

I’ve never met Scott, but first and foremost I think we – roboticists and robot enthusiasts around the globe – all owe him a huge THANK YOU! I think it’s fair to say that if it had not been for Scott, we would not have universities around the world sharing a common robot operating system. And, looking at the amazing contributions on the Willow Garage blog, it seems clear that the past five years in robotics would have been a lot less exciting without ROS and Willow Garage’s robots.

Scott brought the model of impact first, monetize later to robotics. Together with Steve Cousins he assembled an amazing team of people and established a network of external collaboration far and beyond anything ever seen in robotics. Did it get us a household robot that can serve us a cup of tea? No. But WOW, did it ever fast-forward us towards that goal.

So thank you Scott, for your vision, incredibly generous financial contributions, and for leading with actions. Willow Garage has already had a huge impact, and I’m sure there’s much more to come. I’m greatly looking forward to the next steps of Suitable Technologies. We all have much to look forward to from Willow Garage’s other already existing spinoffs (convenience links below) – and, who knows, from Willow Garage itself in one form or another.

Change and innovation are usually good friends, at least in my book. In spite of all the negativity out there I, for one, think the future of robotics has never been brighter.

Robohub - Scott Hassan

Official info:

Willow Garage’s spin offs (to date):



tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Markus Waibel is a Co-Founder and COO of Verity Studios AG, Co-Founder of Robohub and the ROBOTS Podcast.
Markus Waibel is a Co-Founder and COO of Verity Studios AG, Co-Founder of Robohub and the ROBOTS Podcast.





Related posts :



IEEE 17th International Conference on Automation Science and Engineering paper awards (with videos)

The IEEE International Conference on Automation Science and Engineering (CASE) is the flagship automation conference of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society and constitutes the primary forum for c...
ep.

340

podcast

NVIDIA and ROS Teaming Up To Accelerate Robotics Development, with Amit Goel

Amit Goel, Director of Product Management for Autonomous Machines at NVIDIA, discusses the new collaboration between Open Robotics and NVIDIA. The collaboration will dramatically improve the way ROS and NVIDIA's line of products such as Isaac SIM and the Jetson line of embedded boards operate together.
23 October 2021, by

One giant leap for the mini cheetah

A new control system, demonstrated using MIT’s robotic mini cheetah, enables four-legged robots to jump across uneven terrain in real-time.
23 October 2021, by

Robotics Today latest talks – Raia Hadsell (DeepMind), Koushil Sreenath (UC Berkeley) and Antonio Bicchi (Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia)

Robotics Today held three more online talks since we published the one from Amanda Prorok (Learning to Communicate in Multi-Agent Systems). In this post we bring you the last talks that Robotics Today...
21 October 2021, by and

Sense Think Act Pocast: Erik Schluntz

In this episode, Audrow Nash interviews Erik Schluntz, co-founder and CTO of Cobalt Robotics, which makes a security guard robot. Erik speaks about how their robot handles elevators, how they have hum...
19 October 2021, by and

A robot that finds lost items

Researchers at MIT have created RFusion, a robotic arm with a camera and radio frequency (RF) antenna attached to its gripper, that fuses signals from the antenna with visual input from the camera to locate and retrieve an item, even if the item is buried under a pile and completely out of view.
18 October 2021, by





©2021 - ROBOTS Association


 












©2021 - ROBOTS Association