Thursday, February 22, 2024

Robots and the People Who Make Them

WhenIEEE Spectrum editors are placing collectively a problem of the journal, a narrative on the web site, or an episode of a podcast, we attempt to facilitate dialogue about applied sciences, their improvement, and their implications for society and the planet. We characteristic knowledgeable voices to articulate technical challenges and describe the engineering options they’ve devised to satisfy them.

So when Senior Editor Evan Ackerman cooked up an idea for a robotics podcast, he leaned laborious into that concept. Ackerman, the world’s premier robotics journalist, talks with roboticists day-after-day, and recording these conversations to show these interviews right into a podcast is normally a comparatively easy course of. However Ackerman needed to attempt one thing a bit of bit completely different: bringing two roboticists collectively and simply getting out of the way in which.

“The way in which the Chatbot podcast works is that we invite a few robotics consultants to speak with one another a couple of matter they’ve in frequent,” Ackerman explains. “They provide you with the questions, not us, which leads to the sorts of robotics conversations you gained’t hear wherever else—uniquely informative but in addition stunning and enjoyable.”

Every episode focuses on a normal matter the roboticists have in frequent, however as soon as they get to chatting, the friends are free to ask one another about no matter pursuits them. Ackerman is there to ensure they don’t wander too far into the weeds, as a result of we would like everybody to have the ability to get pleasure from these conversations. “However in any other case, I’ll largely simply be listening,” Ackerman says, “as a result of I’ll be as excited as you might be to see how every episode unfolds.”

We predict this distinctive format provides the listener the within scoop on features of robotics that solely the roboticists themselves might get one another to disclose. Our first few episodes are already stay. They embody Skydio CEO Adam Bry and the College of Zurich professor Davide Scaramuzza speaking about autonomous drones, Labrador Methods CEO Mike Dooley and iRobot chief know-how officer Chris Jones on the challenges home robots face in unpredictable dwellings, and choreographer Monica Thomas and Amy LaViers of the Robotics, Automation, and Dance (RAD) Lab discussing find out how to make Boston Dynamics’ robotic dance.

Now we have loads extra Chatbot episodes within the works, so please subscribe on no matter podcast service you want, hear and skim the transcript on our web site, or watch the video variations on the Spectrum YouTube channel. Whilst you’re at it, subscribe to our different biweekly podcast, Fixing the Future, the place we discuss with consultants and Spectrum editors about sustainable options to local weather change and different matters of curiosity. And we’d love to listen to what you concentrate on our podcasts: what you want, what you don’t like, and particularly who you’d like to listen to on future episodes.

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