#241 – Boris Sofman: Waymo, Cozmo, Self-Driving Cars, and the Future of Robotics

Boris Sofman is the Senior Director Of Engineering and Head of Trucking at Waymo, formerly the Google Self-Driving Car project. He was also the CEO and co-founder of Anki, a home robotics company. Please support this podcast by checking out our sponsors:
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Boris’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/bsofman
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Waymo’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/waymo
Waymo’s YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/waymo
Waymo’s Website: https://waymo.com/

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Here’s the timestamps for the episode. On some podcast players you should be able to click the timestamp to jump to that time.
(00:00) – Introduction
(07:32) – Robots in science fiction
(13:13) – Cozmo
(38:28) – AI companions
(45:23) – Anki
(1:10:56) – Waymo Via
(1:42:34) – Sensor suites for long haul trucking
(1:52:30) – Machine learning
(2:10:26) – Waymo vs Tesla
(2:21:02) – Safety and risk management
(2:30:06) – Societal effects of automation
(2:41:11) – Amazon Astro
(2:45:35) – Challenges of the robotics industry
(2:50:03) – Humanoid robotics
(2:57:06) – Advice for getting a PhD in robotics
(3:04:37) – Advice for robotics startups
(3:15:43) – Advice for students