Why AI Cannot Survive Without Community: Meet RobotX Space

The Rise of the Machines. A robot revolution. An impending cyber apocalypse.

Whenever I mention Artificial Intelligence, a naysayer seems to pop up with a dubious sci-fi example or pessimistic catchphrase as to why advancing robotics and AI signal the very end of humanity.

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There’s no doubt that artificial intelligence is changing the world’s flexible workspaces – not to mention the wider technical landscape. So, it was only a matter of time before an AI-dedicated coworking spot opened its doors.

And one has.

RobotX Space is based in the ZGC Innovation Center in Santa Clara, where it houses a passionate, multinational group of dreamers, game-changers, innovators, doers, perfectionists, enthusiasts and creatives all working on robotics and AI.

At the very centre of its ethos is not a cold, mechanical heart – but a vibrant and global community that keeps the cogs turning on the world’s AI and robotics startups. The space depends on the very human connections and expertise in this sector. And RobotX Space works tirelessly to foster and grow this community.

Allwork caught up with RobotX Space to find out more about its community, technology and cross-border collaboration:

Tell me about the RobotX Space and its mission

RobotX Space is the leading global Artificial Intelligence community, coworking space in Silicon Valley. We help entrepreneurs bring concepts to market and provide them with resources to succeed. Based on our mother company, GWC’s global connections and strong relationships with China, RobotX Space is a powerful cross-border platform connecting China and US as well. We regularly host meetups, hackathons, job fairs, training, and demo day on topics ranging from the ethics of artificial intelligence to the utility of household robots.

Why do you think we need a space dedicated to AI? Is there much demand?

Virtually everywhere you look, Bay Area tech businesses are running into Artificial Intelligence, Google, Microsoft, Apple, Tesla, and Uber. AI is the next step in the evolution in the world, especially in Silicon Valley. We need the next big thing, software that can “learn” and “think”, the latest revolution in tech. A lot of AI-focused startups need a work space and community to grow bigger. In addition, VCs’ interest in deep learning artificial intelligence is surging.

What do you offer your tech-focused community that other generic spaces do not?

We want to build an ecosystem for AI startups. If they need a workspace, we have coworking space. If they need to get inspired and network, we have a meetup every two weeks. If they want to find partners and professionals, we have a Data Science Job Fair each quarter. If they are ready to raise funds, we have different topic demo days each month, for example a robotics demo day, AI demo day and an AR (augmented reality) VR (virtual reality) demo day.

How do you work with your community and what benefits do you bring to them?

It’s free to join our Meetups, Job Fairs, and Demo Days. Each year, 26 industry leaders bring ideas about cutting-edge technology to our space. We also host 12 annual entrepreneur seminars covering topics such as startup law, accounting, PR, marketing, financing, and occasional investor meetups.

What sort of entrepreneurs and startups are using your space?  

We will hold the Bosch Silicon Valley Hackathon 2017 at RobotX Space. At the space, our client Bosch will gather teams composed of B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D. and Post-Doc students working over 24 hours on new use cases and solutions for interior sensing for autonomous cars. This hackathon will give the community the opportunity to design and bring to life sensing systems, enabling a whole new experience for the passengers of autonomous vehicles.

Can you tell me more about how you work between the US and China? And why this cross-border relationship is important?

For global networking and to connect industry members. We are able to reach out to more than 800 CEO industry members in our community, including Alibaba, Xiaomi in China, and Facebook, Google etc.

It links us to the world. We have nearly 20,000 sqft office space in total and three local teams that can help you to build up a cross-border office in Silicon Valley, Beijing, and Guangzhou.

Also, we can celebrate with GMIC. GMIC is our mother company’s conference. GMIC ​annually hosts tens of thousands of mobile executives, entrepreneurs, developers, and investors from around the globe and across platforms to build partnerships, to learn from industry thought leaders, to better understand mobile technology trends, and to highlight how mobile is positively changing the world.

Do you use any AI-based tech at the space? If so, how?

We plan to set up a security system based facial feature extraction techniques to manage our community.

What is the biggest challenge facing the AI-based entrepreneurs using your space as they try to bring their concepts to market?

Artificial Intelligence is powerful stuff, but difficult to scale to real-life business. It needs time to develop. However, it is hard to attract top AI talents for those startups.

You’ve got some big names from the AI research space in your network – how do they help your community?

They are the startups’ mentors. Technical or investment mentors and experts will provide guidance and insights to challenge their ideas and solutions.

And if you could add anyone to your network – who would it be?

Elon Musk!