Autonomy-as-a-Service in the Era of the Cyber-Physical

Autonomy-as-a-Service in the Era of the Cyber-Physical


On May 24, Kumardev Chatterjee, CEO of Unmanned Life, took to the stage at Latitude 59 to speak about Autonomy-as-a-Service, the AI driven software platform empowering an autonomous future. To watch him speak click here.

*Background: Latitude59 is the flagship startup and tech event of e-Estonia – the world’s first digital society. In 2018 over 2000 participants took part including 200 investors and 150 startups, with attendees from around over 20 countries around the world, including Unmanned Life!

CEO Kumardev Chatterjee took to the stage to speak about Autonomy-as-a-Service, the reality of the future which is soon to be a familiar part of the present. The AI which is popularly approached as a futuristic vision, is actually a high-pitched reality which is already pervading our day to day lives. The dawn of a new era has been planned for a while and the future for which we brace ourselves has been in many ways for present for longer than we may realise. The concept of the 4th industrial revolution, coined by Klaus Schwab, the head of the World Economic Forum and Davos, is becoming increasingly familiar in popular vernacular, as recognition of this new reality spreads.

It was in 2016 however, that nearly 1000 experts from around the world came together and spoke about the “Dawn of the era of cyber-physical systems”: it is no longer just about software and the internet, nor hardware and robots, it is the combination of the two that is making it possible. This is Autonomy-as-a-Service.

Autonomy-as-a-Service enabling the future of IoT and IoFT

The company Unmanned Life was born out of the need for a way to guide us through this hyper-connected world in which we are always “on”, living simultaneously in both the physical and the cyber worlds. Autonomy-as-a-Service is the door between these worlds, allowing us to pass seamlessly between them with the help of an autonomous workforce.

Autonomy-as-a-Service is a way to provide an autonomous workforce, composed of robots, drones, robotic arms and IoT devices, in a literally hands free way. It transcends even the most intelligent of robots and advanced technology, but the concept itself can apply to any roles of autonomous workforces in the future, and the software can accommodate the evolving technology. From one command “Let something happen” to the end action, Autonomy-as-a-Service will see robots coworking in a complex way, coordinating with each other and navigating together to produce the best possible outcome in a certain time, managed purely through AI and with a software operating through the cloud and on the internet.

This is the reality of the new urban environments, which will feature AI powered transport, drone delivery services and autonomous devices in both office and home. Autonomy-as-a-Service was born a concept but is becoming a standard, to seamlessly power the individual holder of a smartphone or IT device to power an entire and invisible autonomous workforce, from the palm of their hand. For a company this will empower deliveries and production on a mass scale, being done by software invisibly. We have gone to market with Logistics and Telecommunications, but our vision is a revolution using simple architecture that can be managed across sectors.

One area in which this software can have an enormous impact and potentially prevent disasters from occurring, is that of emergency responses. The tragedy of the Grenfell Tower fire which occurred just over a year ago on 14 June 2017, should have been prevented, but reminds us that firefighters are faced by two enormous obstacles in emergency situations.

Firstly communications are down, so there is no way of gathering important information on the building before entering. Firefighters are forced to operate without knowing what parts of the building are unsafe and about to collapse, how and where to find survivors, and they put their lives on the line in working without this crucial information.

Autonomy-as-a-Service can be used here to provide an emergency ad hoc telecom network, and we are talking to the London Mayor Sadiq Khan to enable this. Drones can use this network to relay data on the building, thermal imaging to find survivors and understand which parts of the building are the hottest or most dangerous. An emergency squad of super drones can be deployed to gather key information at this crucial time, which could save many lives.

Autonomy-as-a-Service in Emergency Response situations

This is just one aspect of what can be achieved when we move from the physical world to the cyber-physical world. We are moving to another dimension in which a new reality is possible powered by AI, and our multi-award winning platform is more than just a company, but a vision of a future to offer Autonomy-as-a-Service in a democratic way.