Category

Blog Posts

ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS RECEIVES StrongerBC AGRITECH GRANT

By | Blog Posts, News Releases | No Comments

Provincial funding granted for companies creating innovation in agriculture to strengthen B.C.’s food security and support economic recovery.

BURNABY, BCAdvanced Intelligent Systems (AIS), a leading custom robotics company, announced today it is a recipient of funding provided by the B.C. government’s Agritech Grant program, for its commercialization of its autonomous robot for the agricultural industry.

“We are honored to be selected to receive a StrongerBC Agritech grant. Advanced Intelligent Systems will help improve food security in British Columbia by creating an indoor, driverless, autonomous electric vehicle to transport produce within greenhouses for processing, packing, and shipping,” says Afshin Doust, CEO of AIS.

 “The pandemic has reinforced the vital role our province’s agricultural sector plays in ensuring that British Columbians have access to safe, reliable, and sustainable food,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation. “These investments will strengthen our province’s food security, catalyze innovation and ensure the agritech sector will play a key role in our economic recovery.”

The need for labour in the horticulture industry has been steadily climbing, however, finding workers to perform the repetitive and physically demanding tasks in nurseries and greenhouses operations is extremely challenging. AIS’ autonomous robot – with customizable software and modular parts – will provide the industry with an affordable solution.

As part of its inaugural work, the Agritech Concierge will support grant recipient companies to scale up, expand and develop technologies to help increase regenerative and sustainable food production in B.C. It will also facilitate pathways for international and out-of-province companies to locate and expand within B.C. 

AIS is honoured to help B.C. and the Canadian food industry with its autonomous robot, to create and maintain jobs, and strengthen the supply chain.

“We remain fully committed to increasing our food security in B.C.,” said Lana Popham, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries. “Agritech is one of the ways to do that, and by supporting agritech businesses and entrepreneurs, we can continue to develop and create a world-leading agritech sector that will help increase our domestic food production, strengthen our domestic resiliency and expand our reach into international markets.”

The Agritech Grant program is part of StrongerBC: BC’s Economic Recovery Plan. The plan focuses on recovery that is innovative, sustainable and inclusive.

 

ABOUT ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS:

Advanced Intelligence Systems Inc. (AIS) is a private company specializing in autonomous mobile robotics to solve real industry problems. Headquartered in Burnaby, British Columbia, AIS leads the Canadian market for creating customized and modular robotics solutions to automate business processes. The AIS team has superior intellectual property and patents which are currently being applied to develop custom robotic solutions for various industries such as horticulture, agriculture, and healthcare industries. AIS’ autonomous robots have the intelligence to perform repetitive or dangerous tasks with exceptional dexterity and precision. Collectively, the AIS team has decades of experience in robotics engineering, management, and operations. https://www.ai-systems.ca

 

For more information, please contact:

Debra Hadden | DEBRA HADDEN COMMUNICATIONS | 604.240.3196

ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS PILOTS DISINFECTION ROBOT TO DESTROY PATHOGENS USING ULTRAVIOLET LIGHT

By | Blog Posts, Media Coverage, News Releases | No Comments

Robot development was supported by NGen, Canada’s Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster, to quickly develop a high-performing robotic solution in response to COVID-19

BURNABY, BCAdvanced Intelligent Systems (AIS), a leading custom robotics engineering firm that solves industry challenges with modular, autonomous robots, announced today it has successfully launched an ultraviolet light robot to destroy harmful bacteria and viruses in healthcare facilities and combat the spread of infectious diseases in public spaces. The development was made possible by a grant from Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen).

“At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, NGen rallied industry leaders from across the country to help build a domestic supply of critical equipment. Support for organizations like AIS enabled the rapid development of viable disinfecting solutions and demonstrates the diverse manufacturing and technology capabilities that exist here in Canada,” says Jayson Myers, CEO, NGen

“NGen’s support was instrumental: indeed, the future of our country’s economy relies on our capacity to be a world leader in developing and commercializing scientific and technological innovations. We must be innovators,” says Afshin Doust, CEO, AIS.

AIS received $975k in July 2020 from NGen, to develop the made- in-Canada mobile robot. The Grant represents 50 per cent of the total project cost which was $1.95M. The pandemic required AIS to work quickly, and using its modular approach to robotics, AIS was able to repurpose its agriculture-focused robot and software products to create Orion, an autonomous UV robot for hands-free cleaning and disinfection using ultraviolet light, in less than two months.

Orion eliminates harmful viruses and bacteria to reduce hospital-acquired infections and healthcare-associated infections in public spaces such as hotels, shopping malls and airports. The robot can map large-scale environments to navigate to interest points, and perform crucial disinfection tasks using ultraviolet light technology to reduce the spread of infectious diseases.

Orion is currently being piloted at an international hotel chain with locations in Vancouver’s Lower Mainland.  Soon to be deployed commercially, Orion will also help provide critical support to hospitals, senior care facilities and health care workers dealing with health, safety and resource issues during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are very excited to have been able to so quickly develop an alternative to manual cleaning. Our hands-free mobile robot destroys harmful bacteria and viruses, which is so critical now as there is great need for hands-free disinfection to ensure customer safety and confidence, and to manage operational budgets,” says Doust.

One of AIS’ advantages which allows the company to deploy its UV disinfection robot in numerous industries – is its modular design.  AIS has a variety of modules that are interoperable and exchangeable, and enable greater flexibility for robotics consumers. This is especially key now that there are a number of industries that require a hands-free robotic solution for disinfection of patient rooms and public spaces, and to attract patrons back into hotel common areas and rooms.

 ABOUT ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS:

Advanced Intelligent Systems Inc. (AIS) is a private engineering firm specializing in autonomous mobile robotics to solve real industry problems.

Headquartered in Burnaby, British Columbia, AIS leads the Canadian market for creating customized and modular robotics solutions to automate business processes.

The AIS team has numerous intellectual properties and patents currently being applied to develop custom robotic solutions for various industries such as agriculture, health care, manufacturing, and warehousing.

AIS’ autonomous robots have the intelligence to perform repetitive or dangerous tasks with exceptional dexterity and precision.

Collectively, the AIS team has decades of experience in robotics engineering, management, and operations. https://www.ai-systems.ca

 

ABOUT NEXT GENERATION MANUFACTURING CANADA (NGen):

NGen is the industry-led not-for-profit organization that leads Canada’s Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster.

Its mandate is to help build world-leading advanced manufacturing capabilities in Canada for the benefit of Canadians.

NGen strengthens collaboration among its membership of more than 3,300 manufacturers, technology companies, innovation centres, and researchers. It provides funding and business support to industry-led initiatives to develop, and scale transformative manufacturing solutions in Canada for commercialization in global markets.

NGen also works to attract young Canadians into careers in advanced manufacturing. Learn more at www.careersofthefuture.ca

 

For more information, please contact:

Debra Hadden | DEBRA HADDEN COMMUNICATIONS | 604.240.3196

AIS receives grant from NGen to develop hands-free UV disinfection robot to support health care workers in hospitals and senior care facilities

By | Blog Posts | No Comments

OTTAWA, Ontario, July 6, 2020 – Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen), the industry-led organization leading Canada’s Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster, is co-investing $5 million in projects leading to the development of automated hands-free disinfection methods to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Five outstanding projects have been selected for funding under NGen’s Disinfection Robot Challenge. With matching industry investments, the total value of these projects is in excess of $10 million.

In April NGen challenged companies to develop innovative robotic solutions that would reduce the number of healthcare associated infections for the safety of both patients and healthcare workers, or that would disinfect private spaces and facilities so that businesses could bring employees back to work in a safe and sanitized environment. In order to qualify for funding, projects were expected to have a fast turnaround, demonstrating an impact on COVID-19 within a six month timeframe. NGen received 34 expressions of interest and 19 proposals from innovative companies across Canada.

AIS, Advanced Intelligence Systems, based in Burnaby, BC., which will develop a robot that will map large scale environments such as hospitals, navigate to interest points, and perform hands-free UV disinfection without requiring human intervention. NGen’s investment of $975,615 represents 50 percent of total project costs of $1.95 million.

“We strongly believe this project will be helpful in supporting hospitals, elderly homes and healthcare workers to effectively manage resources during and in the post-Corona pandemic,” says Afshin Doust, CEO.

“Disinfection robots have been deployed successfully in other countries and are showing promising results in terms of reducing the spread of COVID-19 as well as other infectious diseases. Canada has an opportunity to be a world leader in developing and producing large scale disinfecting solutions based on our outstanding advanced manufacturing capabilities,” says Jayson Myers, CEO, NGen.  “Scaling up these capabilities in Canada will spark an entirely new ecosystem around advanced robotic disinfection, creating new business opportunities, jobs and knowledge, and above all anchoring it here at home.”

The Disinfecting Robot Challenge is one of  many challenges NGen plans to issue in support of the economic recovery. On June 25, NGen launched its Made Smarter Strategic Supply Challenge. The competition challenges manufacturers to build sustainable, cost competitive supply of  products essential in Canada’s fight against COVID-19. NGen will allocate at least $15 million to co-invest in these projects.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has presented Canada with many challenges, but it has also highlighted the very best Canadians have to offer,” said Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry. “At an unprecedented time, Canadian manufacturers, supported by organizations such as NGen, have developed innovative, Made in Canada technologies that will save lives and benefit Canadians now and into the future.”

 

To schedule an interview with AIS CEO, Afshin Doust, please contact Debra Hadden at 604.240.3196.

 

RICHARD FREEMAN JOINS ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS AS VICE-PRESIDENT OF PRODUCT & OPERATIONS

By | Blog Posts, Media Coverage, News Releases | No Comments

BURNABY, BCAdvanced Intelligent Systems (AIS), a leading custom robotics company that solves real world industry challenges with adaptable, autonomous robots, announced today that Mr. Richard Freeman has joined AIS as the VP of Product & Operations.

“Mr. Freeman has a wealth of experience in operations and taking high tech products from development to full commercialization, and we are very excited to have him join the AIS team at this crucial point of growth in our company,” says Afshin Doust, CEO of AIS.

Freeman is a coveted operations and product development executive with more than 30 years experience of successfully building and managing high tech companies. His focus has been on managing leading-edge hardware and software communications solutions and service companies across a broad range of technologies and international markets.

“I am extremely excited to be joining such a vibrant and talented team at this critical juncture in AIS’s growth and look forward to helping the company rapidly realize its goals of becoming a significant global player in custom autonomous robotic solutions in the agricultural and health care industries,” says Freeman.

Freeman’s experience will be crucial to the commercial development, manufacturing, supply chain and marketing of AIS’s autonomous robotic solutions: BigTop, an autonomous mobile robot which provides affordable automation for the horticulture and agricultural industries; and Orion, an autonomous UV robot which eliminates harmful viruses and bacteria, crucial for the healthcare industry.

Freeman will use his vast experience in product development and management toward the successful commercial launch of these robotic solutions, both currently undergoing pilot-testing in-field (BigTop at VanBelle, one of North America’s most progressive nursery operations; and, Orion at airports, hospitals and educational facilities).  His experience in working with both hardware and software solutions will also be extremely valuable as AIS’ autonomous robotic platform consists of physical robotic systems and cyber systems, communicating in real time through artificial intelligence.

ABOUT ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS:

Advanced Intelligent Systems (AIS) is a practical autonomous robotics company that creates affordable, autonomous robots to solve real industry problems. The AIS team has superior intellectual property and patents which are currently being applied to develop custom robotic solutions in the horticulture, agriculture and healthcare industries. AIS’ autonomous robots have the intelligence to perform repetitive or dangerous tasks with exceptional dexterity and precision.

Collectively, the AIS team has decades of experience in robotics engineering, management, and operations. The company is based in Burnaby, British Columbia. https://www.ai-systems.ca

For more information, please contact:

Debra Hadden | DEBRA HADDEN COMMUNICATIONS | 604.240.3196

ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS RECEIVES GRANT FROM B.C.’S INNOVATIVE CLEAN ENERGY FUND

By | Blog Posts, Media Coverage, News Releases | No Comments

Provincial funding awarded to support clean energy technology that reduces carbon emissions and automates labour-intensive tasks in the horticulture industry

 

BURNABY, BCAdvanced Intelligent Systems (AIS), a leading custom robotics company that creates practical robots, announced today it has been selected to receive $950,000 from the B.C. government’s Innovative Clean Energy Fund (ICE), for its commercialization of its driverless battery-driven cart-pulling system for the horticultural and agricultural industries.

“We are greatly honoured and privileged that Advanced Intelligent Systems has been selected to receive funding from the Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund. The ICE grant has been presented to us for the innovation of our driverless battery-driven cart-pulling system for outdoor on-site transportation of carts and wagons in a plant nursery. Our technology will help reduce carbon emissions and automate repetitive and labor-intensive tasks in industries such as horticulture,” says Afshin Doust, CEO of AIS.

 

The need for labour in the horticulture industry has been steadily climbing, however, finding workers to perform the repetitive and physically demanding tasks in nurseries and greenhouses operations is extremely challenging. AIS’ autonomous technology – with customizable software and modular parts – provides the industry with an affordable solution. AIS’s technology helps reduce worker injuries by automating repetitive and labour-intensive tasks in the horticulture industry, while contributing to B.C.’s emission reduction goals.

Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation says AIS’ projects showcase the value of new and innovative clean energy products.

“Through Clean BC, we are supporting made-in-B.C. innovations that will help grow our world-leading cleantech sector and create good jobs,”said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation.

 

Since 2008, the ICE Fund has committed $104 million to support pre-commercial clean energy technology projects, clean energy vehicles, research and development and energy efficiency programs, according to the B.C. government. The funding is derived from a levy on the final sale of specified energy products – currently natural gas, fuel oil and propane distribution systems.

 

ABOUT ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS:

Advanced Intelligent Systems (AIS) is a practical autonomous robotics company that creates affordable, autonomous robots to solve real industry problems. The AIS team has superior intellectual property and patents which are currently being applied to develop custom robotic solutions in the horticulture, agriculture, manufacturing, and warehousing industries. AIS’ autonomous robots have the intelligence to perform repetitive or dangerous tasks with exceptional dexterity and precision.

Collectively, the AIS team has decades of experience in robotics engineering, management, and operations. The company is based in Burnaby, British Columbia. https://www.ai-systems.ca

 

Growing Startups: M&A, Go Public Or Stay Private?

By | Blog Posts | No Comments


CEO at Advanced Intelligent Systems, a practical autonomous robotics company with software and hardware modules.

Every entrepreneur hopes to see their startup succeed, but success can send you, your fellow founders, employees and early investors in one of several different directions. The thrill of startup success often gives rise to a set of new questions that key stakeholders must consider. When you want your small company to grow into one that is larger and better able to serve more consumers, following best practices for operations and financial discernment become more important than ever.

Exhilaration and trepidation often commingle when entrepreneurs map out the future of their passion. While many will struggle with the possibility of giving up control over a startup’s destiny, impartiality is paramount at such a critical turning point. Maintaining control is one option alongside other growth strategies that include merging with another company and filing to become a publicly traded firm.

Selecting the best option for your particular startup doesn’t need to be daunting. With each approach, there are pros and cons, so work with any colleagues and consultants that you think will help you sort through the distinctions to arrive at your desired destination.

Finding The Right Merger Fit

Sometimes, the choice is as obvious as the established market competitor that is looking to acquire a smaller company. While conducting research into potential partners to merge with, remember to also consider firms that are reaching out from other industries with hopes of finding a purchase into new markets.

Merging with a larger business and its established reputation can boost a startup’s prestige and credibility. In addition to tax advantages and economies of scale, potential benefits of mergers include expanded market access, improvements to operational logistics and increased brand awareness among consumers.

Potential disadvantages of merging with another business include legal expenses, resistance from existing stakeholders, loss of managerial control and a possible denial of the merger by government regulators. Turn to experienced board members or outside consultants for help with navigating a merger.

There are also times when a startup acquires another company. In either case, if you and the managers of another business agree that a merger will be mutually beneficial, be as transparent as possible with employees regarding new horizons and possible impacts to job stability.

Going Public

Considered by many to be the pinnacle of startup success and a management badge of honor, taking a startup public with an initial public offering can become an entrepreneur’s main focus and motivation. Instead of being acquired outright by another company through a merger and subsequent elimination of redundant roles, an IPO allows founders to steer their business toward substantial financing for the products and initiatives that matter most to them.

Resource hubs, such as IPOhub, exist to help startups become viable public companies. There is an entire consulting sector dedicated to helping businesses prepare for a public offering. A startup’s board of directors can also contribute by advising founders about pre-IPO imperatives such as audits and negotiations.

In addition to accessing levels of financing that were previously out of reach, an IPO offers a startup more publicity, greater flexibility and a way to use its stock as corporate currency for employee incentives as well as a new option for future financing.

Some of the disadvantages associated with a public stock offering include the complexity of accomplishing what needs to be done, the substantial expense, the red tape and the inherent uncertainty with the risk that the IPO will not generate sufficient interest among investors on the stock exchange.

Staying The Course

Something is changing in the world of startups and in the minds of business founders. While many still strive to find an exit and cash in from an acquisition or an IPO, some entrepreneurs are finding success, growth and financing while maintaining private control over their operations.

Instead of dedicating time and resources to pursue suitors among corporate boards and investment banks, more startups are choosing to wait until some organizational gray comes in to illustrate the company’s emerging maturity. Increasingly, startups are finding it possible to secure sufficient financing without needing to go public or become a target for acquisition.

One reason for startups to stay private is managerial control. Others include avoiding regulatory restrictions, remaining agile, considering a direct exchange listing over an IPO and economizing on operating costs. A privately held enterprise might also be better for current employees.

Among the disadvantages of staying private, a startup’s growth can be restrained when insufficient funds derail important plans. Private businesses might not get as much publicity as they would if they were publicly held, or they might even gain a reputation of being timid or indecisive.

Choosing The Startup Path

Some people consider any delay in taking a startup public to be a business management mistakeInvestors fear missing opportunities. Consumer expectations are constantly shifting.

As an entrepreneur, you must gauge your level of passion for your startup. What matters more to you, the potential to maximize your capital gains or the satisfaction you get while working to help your business succeed from the merits and innovations that you and your co-workers bring forth?

When your startup reaches a level of growth and success that attracts attention from outside investors, you will be faced with making choices about the future of the business and its stakeholders. Be sure to consider all the pros and cons of each option before dedicating your startup to taking one path over the others.

 

17 Tech Pros Share Their Favorite Industry-Focused Podcasts

By | Blog Posts | No Comments

The tech world evolves faster than any other industry. What was once considered cutting-edge may fall by the wayside in a week, never to be revisited. Whether they’re in the business of producing business or consumer tech or they’re overseeing their company’s internal tech processes, all tech professionals need to pay attention to both tech and business trends, as well as the latest advances and their impact.

Podcasts remain one of the best ways to stay in touch with what’s going on in business and industry—especially for busy tech professionals. But which podcasts do tech leaders find the most useful? Below, 17 members of Forbes Technology Council discuss the podcasts they never miss and the essential information they provide tech leaders and professionals across industries.

1. 16 Minutes On The News

16 Minutes on the News, hosted by Sonal Chokshi, a16z’s editor in chief, covers the top tech headlines of the week in 16 minutes. Presented by Andreessen Horowitz, one of Silicon Valley’s leading VC firms, the podcast details why the topics are in the news and what’s real versus what’s hype. It is my go-to podcast for keeping up with technology because it gives me a quick overview of what matters so I can stay well-informed. – Michael KeithleyUnited Talent Agency

2. Arrested DevOps

I enjoy Arrested DevOps for the diverse technology perspectives from the guests and hosts—my favorite host being Bridget Kromhout. Discussions center on real-life DevOps challenges and forward-leaning initiatives. It always catches my attention to hear how organizations are pushing the boundaries on the implementation and practice of DevOps, AIOPs and other associated methodologies. – Troy McAlpin, xMatters

3. BBC Click

I enjoy and encourage everyone to listen to BBC Click. This podcast covers every spectrum of the tech and gadget world. It creates sufficient curiosity that you want to go and investigate the topics further. – Susan Bowen, Aptum

4. Business Wars

I enjoy Business Wars by Wondery. This podcast features many tech-related episodes that describe stories that we’ve all heard of and think we know well—but we’ve never really heard the entire stories with all of the details. It’s educational and has excellent storytelling and editing. Check it out! – Or Lenchner, Bright Data (Formerly Luminati Networks)

5. The Cloudcast

The Cloudcast is my favorite tech-focused podcast, as cloud is my area of interest. This podcast regularly covers aspects such as serverless, open-source, DevOps and containers, among other topics, and covers major cloud providers such as AWS, Azure and GCP. – Sunil Sarat, Microland

6. Cyber Security Sauna

I regularly listen to the Cyber Security Sauna podcast, hosted by Janne Kauhanen. It provides interesting details on hot topics in cybersecurity and presents top trends in an easy manner. This helps me keep pace with the latest happenings in the cybersecurity domain and adapt to the constantly changing approach to defending against adversaries. – Arun Singh, Ilantus Technologies

7. Darknet Diaries

Most people, tech executives included, have no idea what really happens on the dark side of the internet—despite cybersecurity quickly becoming the chief concern of many boardrooms. Darknet Diaries is my go-to podcast for hacker culture and antics. The podcast features true stories about hackers, breaches, shadow government activity, hacktivism and cybercrime. – Cory Ruthardt, Simpatico Systems

8. The Economics For Business

Every CTO needs to understand the business goals and economics behind the decisions they make. The Economics for Business podcast, with Hunter Hastings, is a great resource for innovators, covering topics such as complexity theory, customer value monitoring, process improvement and entrepreneurship. – Clay Miller, SyncDog

 

9. Hacking Humans

The CyberWire’s Hacking Humans podcast is one of my favorites because it takes a deeper look into what’s going on in the field of cybersecurity that’s focused on social engineering. The hosts provide a concise and engaging format that makes it easy to get the information you want while keeping you interested throughout each episode. – Stu Sjouwerman, KnowBe4, Inc.

10. Invest Like The Best

One of my favorite podcasts is Invest Like the Best, by Patrick O’Shaughnessy. It’s more about how to invest your time when building a business. The guests are generally entrepreneurs who talk about the “secret” insight that drives their business. – Wendy Chen, Omnistream

11. Lex Fridman’s Podcast

Lex Fridman’s podcast is second-to-none for deep, wide-ranging discussions with the brightest and most interesting minds in fields such as AI, ML, physics and mathematics. Each episode is two to three hours long, allowing Fridman to really dig into topics with his guests. For me, it’s a “can’t-miss” and by far the most thought-provoking podcast out there. – Paul Lipman

12. Like A BossHipstersMasters Of Scale

Latin America has an effervescent podcast scene. To keep up to date with the tech world, I recommend Like a Boss for its inspiring talks with great entrepreneurs and Hipsters, which discusses coding, UX, technological trends and much more. And in the U.S., there’s Masters of Scale, in which LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman hosts insightful, thought-provoking interviews with CEOs and leaders. – Lincoln Ando, idwall

13. Packet Pushers

Packet Pushers offers the best—and most entertaining—analysis of all things networking going, whether it’s about a technical deep dive or “pooh-poohing” the latest desperate technology takeover. There’s something for everyone here. – Jeff PainePica8 Inc.

14. Pivot

I recommend the Pivot podcast. Hosts Kara Swisher and Scott Galloway are super-smart, updated and highly connected to the people who matter. In every new podcast, I learn new things, and it makes me think about my own world and business. – Tzahi (Zack) Weisfeld, Intel Ignite

15. Product Talk

Product Talk, by Nikki Ahmadi, is a podcast you just can’t miss. Ahmadi is a very capable product manager, and in her podcast she explores different perspectives from successful tech executives and product owners and managers on product management. She asks the right questions, and her podcast is very insightful. – Afshin Doust, Advanced Intelligent Systems Inc.

16. This Week In Google

I enjoy listening to the This Week In Google podcast, hosted by Leo Laporte, Jeff Jarvis, Stacey Higginbotham and Ant Pruitt. First, I appreciate Higginbotham’s expertise in matters concerning the Internet of Things. Second, the podcast covers a variety of relevant topics, including connected and smart homes, IoT devices, smart services, and more, all presented in a positive and informative way. I highly recommend it! – Amir Kotler, Veego Software

17. This Week In Tech

This Week In Tech (TWiT) is an entertaining and long-running panel-format podcast helmed by the incomparable Leo Laporte. Laporte is a master of his craft, with decades of experience hosting similar shows in various media, and the knowledge, chemistry and humor are must-haves. I know people who listen to the new episode of TWiT multiple times a week—it’s that good. – Jonathan Gill, Backtracks

ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS RECEIVES StrongerBC AGRITECH GRANT

By | Blog Posts, News Releases | No Comments

Provincial funding granted for companies creating innovation in agriculture to strengthen B.C.’s food security and support economic recovery.

BURNABY, BCAdvanced Intelligent Systems (AIS), a leading custom robotics company, announced today it is a recipient of funding provided by the B.C. government’s Agritech Grant program, for its commercialization of its autonomous robot for the agricultural industry.

“We are honored to be selected to receive a StrongerBC Agritech grant. Advanced Intelligent Systems will help improve food security in British Columbia by creating an indoor, driverless, autonomous electric vehicle to transport produce within greenhouses for processing, packing, and shipping,” says Afshin Doust, CEO of AIS.

 “The pandemic has reinforced the vital role our province’s agricultural sector plays in ensuring that British Columbians have access to safe, reliable, and sustainable food,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation. “These investments will strengthen our province’s food security, catalyze innovation and ensure the agritech sector will play a key role in our economic recovery.”

The need for labour in the horticulture industry has been steadily climbing, however, finding workers to perform the repetitive and physically demanding tasks in nurseries and greenhouses operations is extremely challenging. AIS’ autonomous robot – with customizable software and modular parts – will provide the industry with an affordable solution.

As part of its inaugural work, the Agritech Concierge will support grant recipient companies to scale up, expand and develop technologies to help increase regenerative and sustainable food production in B.C. It will also facilitate pathways for international and out-of-province companies to locate and expand within B.C. 

AIS is honoured to help B.C. and the Canadian food industry with its autonomous robot, to create and maintain jobs, and strengthen the supply chain.

“We remain fully committed to increasing our food security in B.C.,” said Lana Popham, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries. “Agritech is one of the ways to do that, and by supporting agritech businesses and entrepreneurs, we can continue to develop and create a world-leading agritech sector that will help increase our domestic food production, strengthen our domestic resiliency and expand our reach into international markets.”

The Agritech Grant program is part of StrongerBC: BC’s Economic Recovery Plan. The plan focuses on recovery that is innovative, sustainable and inclusive.

 

ABOUT ADVANCED INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS:

Advanced Intelligence Systems Inc. (AIS) is a private company specializing in autonomous mobile robotics to solve real industry problems. Headquartered in Burnaby, British Columbia, AIS leads the Canadian market for creating customized and modular robotics solutions to automate business processes. The AIS team has superior intellectual property and patents which are currently being applied to develop custom robotic solutions for various industries such as horticulture, agriculture, and healthcare industries. AIS’ autonomous robots have the intelligence to perform repetitive or dangerous tasks with exceptional dexterity and precision. Collectively, the AIS team has decades of experience in robotics engineering, management, and operations. https://www.ai-systems.ca

 

For more information, please contact:

Debra Hadden | DEBRA HADDEN COMMUNICATIONS | 604.240.3196

The Importance Of Viral Kindness In 2021

By | Blog Posts | No Comments

CEO at Advanced Intelligent Systems, a practical autonomous robotics company with software and hardware modules. 

There seems to be a lot of discord around the world. One thing that almost everyone agrees about, though, is that 2020 was a stressful year. Has there ever been a more welcome sight than a brand-new calendar with “2021” printed at the top? Is there anything more heartening these days than stories of people demonstrating kindness toward those who struggle with fears of Covid-19 and its fallout?

Unprecedented times call for unprecedented kindnesses. Kindness is good for the soul. What’s more, kindness helps to improve bodily health for both the giver and the receiver.

Sometimes, though, people neglect kind acts — even simple thoughtfulness — when their own survival is at risk. History books and literature tell stories of “man’s inhumanity toward man” amid stressful circumstances that seemed to portend death for those whose will to survive was lacking.

Our Actions Define Us

Stress itself doesn’t kill anyone, but our reactions to stressful situations can sometimes do great harm. One person under stress might perform acts that appear miraculous and benevolent, while the same stresses might compel someone else to commit atrocities. The way that each of us perceives stress and its potential for causing damage becomes a catalyst for their subsequent actions.

As an analogy and an example of different reactions to different perceptions of stressful situations, consider the often conflated emotions of jealousy and envy.

As Aristotle is often quoted as having said, “Jealousy is both reasonable and belongs to reasonable men, while envy is base and belongs to the base, for the one makes himself get good things by jealousy, while the other does not allow his neighbour to have them through envy.”

It isn’t difficult to confuse a self-interested action with a selfish action. One’s self-interest aligns well with the self-interest of others. Being selfish, on the other hand, implies losing rationality and with it a genuine sense of self. A selfish person often becomes obsessed with an unhealthy perception that others don’t do enough to relieve them of their stress.

Animals experiencing stress undergo a fight-flight-freeze response. Whenever someone perceives that they’re facing imminent danger, they might become like a wolverine defending itself from an aggressive bear, a bird taking wing to escape a charging house cat or a deer in the headlights.

Enemy Minuscule

What happens if a perceived threat is so small as to be invisible? Is there an objective, rational response to something that can’t be fought or evaded in a traditional sense? Are people frozen in the headlights of oncoming pathogens, or do they rally together and do what needs to be done?

In recent months, the lockdown reaction to Covid-19 has been damaging livelihoods and health. Loneliness and depression have turned out to be parallel pandemics that remain largely overlooked. An alarming number of people have been taking their own lives, and the people who try to talk them out of potentially dangerous behavior are themselves becoming desperate.

Along with the coronavirus pandemic, 2020 might be remembered as a year of widespread isolation, self-harm and domestic tragedy. Substance abuse is up, as is violent crime — but on the other hand, so is entrepreneurial activity.

Seniors appear to be taking the brunt of Covid-19’s fury, although innovative ideas are encouraging younger people to show that they care. Foremost on many adult minds are two related questions: Will this coronavirus be around forever in one form or another, and when will all the restrictions finally end?

After The Pandemic

Some people have become less social during the first year of Covid-19. Others have come together to produce new miracles.

In truth, it’s too early to know one way or another whether society has transformed as a result of Covid-19 and our early reactions to it. Around the world, our most basic emotional needs remain feeling safe, cared for and loved. Every chance to pursue personal or economic growth stems from such fundamental security.

There exists a saying about the inability to demonstrate love toward anyone without first knowing self-love. What is self-love, though? Is it self-esteem? Is it self-respect? Is it those things and more?

Perhaps genuine self-love, like all love, must be unconditional. Having self-esteem and self-respect might be important for psychological health, but maybe it’s just as important to feel love — and feel loved — when some or all those other things seem to be lacking.

Caring for oneself is being kind to oneself, and kindness is one of love’s pillars. An antidote to self-harm is self-care, so any analysis of Covid-19’s effect on society must start there. Care for yourself. Be kind to yourself, and then your kindness will go viral to help those who continue to suffer. If enough of us do that, acting with sincere self-interest, future generations might look back and thank their 21st-century ancestors for establishing an era of sustained mutual aid and cooperation.

With the effects of Covid-19 and the closure of offices, specifically in the tech sector, caring and being kind to ourselves can boost productivity and motivation. We are social creatures, and now we are caged in our home offices. Tech leaders and executives should ensure they convey a culture of self-care in order to keep their team members in a happy and performing mood.