Episode 121 – Gather AI
In this episode, I was joined by Dr. Sankalp Arora of Gather AI who is their Chief Robotics Engineer. Gather AI is a software-only autonomous inventory management platform that works with drones for gathering inventory data in the warehouse. Sankalp and I discuss how the idea of Gather AI came about, differences from competitors, and also some of the versatility that their platform offers.
- Sankalp discusses how his work towards getting his Ph.D. was very much geared towards how to collect data autonomously. As he and his team explored this concept they started to utilize drones due to their agility and the realization that they could capture a large amount of data. In this time he also helped to develop the first autonomous helicopter. Once they figured out how to capture data in the best way they came up with the idea for Gather AI to apply this technology to capturing inventory data for warehousing. What is most interesting is how Sankalp mentions they needed to make the drone curious so that it would know what to do in its environment.
- Gather AI is very clear that they are not a drone company. They are an inventory management software company that happens to utilize off the shelf drones to capture the data needed for their platform. The drone is constantly capturing images as it moves through the facility which captures needed data and also helps the drone to navigate through space. As far as the facility set up there are just some marker tags that needed to be strategically placed throughout the facility making it quite easy to implement.
- Prior to our discussion, I received a demo of their platform and I could see in real-time on an iPad as the drone was capturing data into the software. The drone can capture a count of visible boxes, identify different SKUs and it can also identify temperature for applications where temperature recording is needed. It does this through machine learning and interpreting what is written on the box. From an inventory control perspective, the great thing about this solution is not only the increased efficiency in cycle counting but also has pictures of the locations on hand to reference when researching inventory discrepancies.
Listen to the episode below and let us know if you plan on automating your cycle counting.