Laplace Robotics is a cutting-edge startup that is revolutionizing the manufacturing industry by democratizing robotics automation and the power of AI. With a fully integrated software platform designed to be user-friendly, affordable, and scalable, Laplace Robotics is committed to making this technology accessible to businesses of all sizes.
Laplace Robotics offers an advanced AI-powered robotics automation platform that seamlessly integrates with a wide range of off-the-shelf hardware components. Our software provides businesses with the flexibility to customize their solutions according to their specific needs, ensuring they can choose the hardware components that best fit their requirements. This approach allows our customers to avoid vendor lock-in and mitigate potential supply chain crises.
Our primary focus at Laplace Robotics is on software integration and delivering cutting-edge AI capabilities for robotic automation in manufacturing plants. By providing our customers with our software expertise, we empower them to concentrate on mechanical integration, facilitating the adoption of AI and robotics while reducing overall costs. Our platform is designed to effortlessly integrate with various hardware components such as sensors, cameras, and robots.
To facilitate digitized manufacturing management and decision-making, Laplace Robotics offers a cloud-based production dashboard. This dashboard enables customers to monitor their processes in real time and make data-driven decisions. With its user-friendly interface, businesses can quickly harness the power of robotics automation and AI, transforming their operations and enhancing their bottom line.
Our Mission: Democratizing AI Robotics for Anyone and Any Task.
Tell us about yourself?
Rae Jeong, CEO of Laplace Robotics, studied at the University of Waterloo with a focus on Mechatronics, Robotics, and Automation. He spent time in the San Francisco and Vancouver areas as an intern developing robotic applications and deep enforcement learning. From there, he spent time in England with the Google Deep Mind group as a Research Engineer working on AI deep learning. He came back to Canada and started Laplace Robotics.
A collaborative effort brought together Rae Jeong and his team of software engineers and food industry manufacturing professionals to revolutionize the food manufacturing industry through the development, building, and implementation of an AI Vision System with robotics. This multidisciplinary team combined their expertise and knowledge to tackle the challenges faced in food manufacturing, leveraging advanced technologies to provide innovative solutions. The software engineers designed and developed the AI Vision System, incorporating machine learning algorithms and computer vision capabilities to analyze and inspect food products in real-time. The food manufacturing professionals brought their deep understanding of industry requirements and processes, ensuring the system’s suitability for the production environment. Together, this cross-functional team created a cutting-edge solution that enhances quality control, process efficiency, and safety in the food manufacturing industry, transforming the way products are inspected and manufactured.
If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
If I had the opportunity to go back in time a year or two, I would definitely advise my team to prioritize two key areas: focusing on our core strengths and learning from our customers. The manufacturing industry can be incredibly complex, and in retrospect, I believe that understanding when to collaborate with experienced industry veterans and leverage their expertise while also showcasing our unique capabilities would have led to greater success.
By honing in on what we do best, we could have directed our efforts and resources towards areas where we excel and have a competitive advantage. This approach would have allowed us to differentiate ourselves from competitors and deliver exceptional value to our customers. In retrospect, we might have been more effective if we had identified and concentrated on our core strengths earlier.
Additionally, learning from our customers is crucial in any business, and manufacturing is no exception. Engaging with customers, understanding their needs, and actively seeking their feedback would have provided us with valuable insights and helped us tailor our products or services accordingly. By listening attentively to our customers, we would have been better equipped to address their pain points and deliver solutions that truly met their requirements.
Ultimately, going back in time, I would emphasize the importance of finding the balance between leveraging partnerships and expertise in the industry and capitalizing on our unique strengths. This strategic approach would have positioned us for greater success in the dynamic and challenging manufacturing landscape.
What problem does your business solve?
As the demand for automation grows and the labour crisis intensifies in Canada’s Food industry and manufacturing in general, businesses are increasingly seeking AI-powered vision and robotics solutions to assist with this crisis. Laplace Robotics aims to serve this market by providing flexible tools for regular people and businesses of any size to program robots for any task, leveraging the power and innovation of AI. Ease of implementation. No need for a business to hire specialized employees. We do the programming, and the customer installs the hardware. We’ve made it very simple to install and get up and running. Anyone can install the hardware, but the challenge for manufacturers is the programming for the systems. We take care of that for them so our customers feel comfortable and confident implementing AI and robotics.
What is the inspiration behind your business?
I have a vivid memory of the first time I encountered the application of deep learning in robotics and witnessed the demonstration of deep reinforcement learning back in 2016. At that time, I was interning at a robotics startup in California. The groundbreaking work of Sergey Levine and the team at Google Brain, along with the AlphaGo project by DeepMind, completely amazed me and solidified my belief that this was the future. Determined to learn more about this revolutionary approach to building intelligent systems that could operate in the real world, I eagerly delved into books, research papers, and online open courses on the subject. This endeavour turned out to be incredibly fruitful, eventually leading me to join DeepMind immediately after completing my undergraduate studies, first as a research intern and then as a full-time research engineer.
A couple of years ago, it became increasingly evident that large transformer models would unlock a new frontier in artificial intelligence. Although all the specifics weren’t yet fully understood, the future seemed more certain than ever before. This realization fueled my motivation to start our company at that time. I wanted to ensure that this new level of artificial intelligence was applied to industries that needed it the most, and I was prepared to develop and deliver these solutions to society.
Fast forward to a few months ago when the announcements of ChatGPT and GPT-4 were made. For the first time since 2016, I felt the same level of excitement and conviction about the possibilities that artificial intelligent systems could offer in the future.
The incredible advancements made in just the past few months have truly accelerated our core mission of democratizing AI Robotics, making it accessible to anyone for any task. With that in mind, we wanted to express our gratitude for following our journey over the past few months by sharing an early version of this future with you. The following is an internal demo that took place about a month ago, and we plan to release a much more refined product version to the public in approximately a month. We sincerely hope you enjoy this sneak peek of the demo and experience the same level of excitement that we currently feel.
What is your magic sauce?
Laplace Robotics possesses two core competitive advantages that drive its long-term success. The first advantage is the unique datasets collected from manufacturing environments and the benchmarks created to validate performance. These datasets guide AI models to understand the world in the way required by the industry, enabling near zero-shot production-level performance.
The second competitive advantage lies in the company’s mission to democratize robotics automation and the power of AI for everyone. By concentrating on software and scale from the outset, Laplace Robotics focuses on developing scalable AI models and high-performance software that can operate across various applications. This approach is bolstered by a strong network of partners capable of handling mechanical design and integration.
The exceptional team at Laplace Robotics, with backgrounds from prestigious AI organizations such as DeepMind and MILA, brings a unique combination of mission-driven mindset and technical expertise, giving the company an unparalleled competitive edge.
What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?
We foresee a significant increase in the adoption of robotics and AI solutions within the manufacturing industry in the coming years. As the market expands, it is expected that new competitors will emerge. However, Laplace Robotics distinguishes itself through its unique approach, unwavering focus on flexibility, and utilization of cutting-edge technology.
A vital aspect of Laplace Robotics’ commitment lies in its ability to address both complex and simpler automation tasks, serving customers effectively and maintaining a long-term data strategy. The company’s robust ML pipeline for AI robotics facilitates efficient and rapid production of AI models for various applications, providing a significant competitive advantage in the short to medium term.
In summary, we are a pioneering startup that is revolutionizing the manufacturing industry by democratizing robotics automation and harnessing the power of AI. With its innovative technology, expanding market, and distinct competitive advantages, Laplace Robotics is poised for continuous success and growth. Its advancements are reshaping the way businesses operate in an increasingly challenging market landscape.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
The biggest challenge we’ve faced so far has been the development of an AI system that can perform at a production level and the creation of a repeatable process to address a wide range of applications. While prototype systems may function well in controlled environments, the real challenge lies in handling the variations and edge cases that arise in actual manufacturing settings. This challenge is particularly pronounced in industries like food manufacturing, where we have achieved considerable success.
To overcome this obstacle, we had to make significant investments in our AI development efforts. We focused deeply on refining our core competencies and collaborated closely with our partners and customers to learn from their expertise in other aspects of the overall solution. By doing so, we were able to deliver functioning AI and robotics solutions in the real world, equipped with the precise features and capabilities that the industry demands.
Without our commitment to enhancing our AI capabilities and leveraging partnerships while working closely with our customers, achieving this level of success would not have been possible. The dedication to strengthening our expertise, combined with collaborative efforts, allowed us to overcome the challenges and provide industry-specific solutions that meet the needs of our clients effectively.
How can people get involved?
We like to connect with manufacturers, from small to large, to form a working partnership with them to develop their AI strategy. Our software provides businesses with the flexibility to customize their solutions according to their specific needs, ensuring they can choose the hardware components that best fit their requirements. This approach allows our customers to avoid vendor lock-in and mitigate potential supply chain crises.