Flutterby™! : Reaching for the moon

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Reaching for the moon

2008-02-07 01:59:10.657781+00 by Dan Lyke 2 comments

Ten years ago or so I interviewed at a place that was trying to turn some basic shape recognition and camera technology into "interactive teletubbies". Recently I got sent this little video game system with a camera interface, and was reminded of the flashback to then, and started thinking about organizations that reach well beyond the technology of the day, that promise things that won't be ready for a decade. Then I got sent this bit of vaporware video about shape-shifting swarming robots that starts out with animations of people manipulating full-fledged highly detailed models, and the clicks over to clunky electromagnet blocks.

And I got to thinking about Dust Networks.

Does the company that makes grandiose promises that the technology won't meet for a decade or more ever win? Or is it better to look to the achievable and, more importantly, sell the achievable?

[ related topics: Games Robotics Video ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2008-02-07 02:16:55.929553+00 by: meuon

It's all about getting VC.

#Comment Re: made: 2008-02-07 05:13:55.856659+00 by: ebradway

This isn't about VC - it's about grant money. Smaller $$ than VC but basically no expectation of results. Your results could be "gee, that's a dead end - here's what we can learn from that".

I'm doing the same kind of work - what I'm doing with spatial data won't be used anytime soon or ever. But hopefully some of my dead-ends will be avoided.

Actually, I'm going to be working with USGS this Summer. I'll be working with the folks who are creating the groundwork for the USGS spatial databases that'll be implemented in about 10 years. That'll be a little more practical - and we'll specifically be trying to avoid the dead ends. I mentioned this to my friend, Scott, who works at USGS in Menlo Park and he asked: "What platform will it run on?"

Hmmm... A platform that doesn't exist yet, most likely! Especially given the dynamic nature of the "GeoWeb" in recent years. Most of what we think of as "normal" in the GeoWeb didn't even exist five years ago (e.g., Google Earth).