Join Us for Robo Madness West at SRI on April 7

The robotics industry is at an inflection point. Self-driving cars, automated warehouses, and drone delivery systems are on the horizon. Commercial robots have become more capable and accessible, thanks to cheaper and more powerful sensors and computers, open-source software and hardware, and advances in 3D printing and connected devices.

While giants like Google, Facebook, and Amazon have made strides in the field, a new generation of robot startups and investors has emerged worldwide to solve problems in fields like manufacturing, healthcare, retail, agriculture, entertainment, and education.

What are the real problems that robots can solve in these markets? How are startups and big companies thinking about the opportunities and building their business? And where will the U.S. and Silicon Valley rank in the global competition for commercial robotics?

Xconomy’s fourth annual robotics event at SRI International—we’re calling it Robo Madness West—will tackle these questions, and more. It’s all happening in Menlo Park, CA, on the afternoon of April 7, during National Robotics Week. With help from SRI roboticist Rich Mahoney, we’re convening top leaders in the technology and business of robots from the Bay Area and beyond for a half-day of interactive talks, panels, and demos.

We’re still working on the agenda, but a few speakers to highlight:

Jim McCollum, CEO of Restoration Robotics, a company that has raised $100M+ to transform the field of hair transplantation.

David Cann, CEO of Double Robotics, a company looking to take telepresence robots to the mainstream.

Steve Cousins, CEO of Savioke, which has developed (among other things) a hotel-based helper robot. Cousins is the former CEO of Willow Garage.

Roger Hine, CTO of Liquid Robotics, maker of an autonomous seafaring platform that collects and transmits ocean data.

Andra Keay, Managing Director of Silicon Valley Robotics, who is involved in incubating and supporting robot startups.

Ryan Kuder, Managing Director of the Qualcomm Robotics Accelerator (powered by Techstars), which is kicking off its first class of startups in May.

Kyle Vogt, CEO of Cruise Automation, a company that’s retrofitting cars with self-driving technology.

We’ll have much more on this event in the coming weeks. In the meantime you can register here, and we look forward to seeing you on April 7.

Gregory T. Huang is Xconomy's Editor in chief. E-mail him at gthuang [at] xconomy.com. Follow @gthuang

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