Waypoint Robotics’ Jason Walker on mobile robots; Thomas Visti’s next chapter

Welcome to Episode 13 of The Robot Report Podcast, which brings conversations with robotics innovators straight to you. Join us every Wednesday for discussions with leading roboticists, innovative robotics companies, and other key members of the robotics community.

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This week we talk to Jason Walker, the CEO & Co-founder of Waypoint Robotics, a developer of autonomous mobile robots (AMRs). We talk all things AMR with Jason, including misconceptions with customers, his affinity for ROS, why Waypoint hasn’t yet moved onto ROS 2, and how his experience as a racecar engineer prepared him for robotics. Jason also hits on why mobile manipulation is a trend to watch, including a teaser of some of his company’s work coming down the pipeline.

The Robot Report Podcast

Jason Walker, CEO & Co-founder of Waypoint Robotics, with the MAV3K autonomous mobile robot.

Gene and I also catch up with Thomas Visti, the former CEO of Mobile Industrial Robots (MiR), another developer of AMRs. Visti stepped down to launch Visti Unlimited to help tech entrepreneurs in Denmark. Thomas talks about the decision to step down from MiR, his toughest challenges while working at MiR and Universal Robots, as well as how he determines what companies he wants to invest in and help scale. We also ask about his relationship with fellow Danish robotics entrepreneur Esben Østergaard, Teradyne’s role in Visti Unlimited, and how COVID-19 has impacted robotics startups.

We also preview our weekly RoboBusiness Direct series that continues August 27 at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Paolo Pirjanian, CEO of Embodied, will discuss how the company developed its Moxie companion robot. He will describe, among other things, how machine learning was employed so that Moxie platform could perceive, process, and respond to natural conversation, eye contact, and facial expressions.

If you would like to be a guest on an upcoming episode of the podcast, or if you have recommendations for future guests or segment ideas, contact Steve or Eugene. For sponsorship opportunities of The Robot Report Podcast, contact Courtney Nagle for more information.

Podcast Timestamps
0-:30 – Ad Read
:31-4:35: Show Intro
4:36-47:00: Conversation with Jason Walker, CEO & Co-founder, Waypoint Robotics
47:01-47:32: Ad Read
47:33-1:15:27: Conversation with Thomas Visti, Owner & Chairman of Visti Unlimited (former CEO of Mobile Industrial Robots)
1:15:28-1:16:15: Show Outro

Podcast Links
The Robot Report Podcast on Apple Podcasts |  SoundCloud | Spotify | Google Play
The Robot Report YouTube Channel
RoboBusiness Direct

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Written by

Mike Oitzman

Mike Oitzman is Senior Editor of WTWH's Robotics Group, cohost of The Robot Report Podcast, and founder of the Mobile Robot Guide. Oitzman is a robotics industry veteran with 25-plus years of experience at various high-tech companies in the roles of marketing, sales and product management. He can be reached at moitzman@wtwhmedia.com.