And we are straight into details… Currently I lead the Robotics Innovation Programme at the world' largest private construction company... which as it turns out has a fairly impressive R&D- Innovation arm. In a nut shell, robots are good… they want them… everywhere… I/we think that I can help!
On top of that, I also hold a couple of academic appointments; one at Stanford University (CA, USA) and the other is an adjunct professorial appointment at the University of Technology, Sydney (NSW, Australia).
And mostly just because I think sleep is over rated, I am also actively ticking off R&D embedded design contracts for several electronic musical instrument companies on a regular basis; a few in the States and a couple in sunny UK. I have something like 30+ commercially available products in this realm out there, and I am adding a couple each year. These roles are great for tinkering with man-machine interfaces, and testing my idea in that space. <Side note: It is actually quite a buzz to see a music video of a band I’m into and noticing that they have one or more of my bits of kit around them.>
I find this a good mix - the industry roles allow me to connect my research vision and efforts to 'real' applications and needs. This connection is great, as pursuing thought/value/idea validation for R&D initiatives is a fair bit easier when there is a 'real' returns-on-investment that can be calculated. The University appointments are a great balance to this. They provide me an avenue to explore the bluest-of-blue-sky’s… well… just because it's interesting! (Well, to be serious for a second, to explore the bluest-of-blue-sky’s because that’s where the future comes from – Start in the sky and refine until it’s a product on the ground!).
Right… for the detailed orientated, click here -->
Dr Nathan Kirchner HRI Roboticist