Hear the epic true tales of how developers, programmers, hackers, geeks, and open source rebels are revolutionizing the technology landscape. Command Line Heroes is an award-winning podcast hosted by Saron Yitbarek and produced by Red Hat. Get root access to show notes, transcripts, and other associated content at https://redhat.com/commandlineheroes
Robot as Maker
One of the first functional robots appeared on TV in 1966. That’s earlier than some of us expect. The Unimate’s televised premiere sparked the world’s imagination. It represented a host of possibilities. Those possibilities, however, also implied a coming competition that would last for decades.
Dag Spicer tells the story of the Unimate, the first industrial robot—and how little the American public trusted it. But that distrust wasn’t universal. Tomonori Sanada explains how the Unimate was received very differently in Japan. Joe Campbell describes the dangers of working alongside industrial robots. But he’s working to change that with cobots. And Paul Shoup shares how his company, employees, and customers are benefiting from cobots.
Robot as Software
Building a physical robot isn’t cheap—even when it’s the final version. Designing a robot and testing it over and over again? That takes a lot of tries. And likely more than a few failures on the way to success. Luckily, simulation software is reducing the scrap heap—and bringing down the costs of building robots from the ground up. Kevin Knoedler shares how simulation software allows him to program and design robots from home. And even though he doesn’t have the budget or support of major research institutions like DARPA, his robots still end up winning major competitions. Evan Ackerman points out that winning those competitions takes a lot of skills. But amateurs have more ways than ever to get started with robotics. Louise Poubel explains how much time, energy, and money is saved with robot simulation software—and how it’s not just for the amateurs. And Dr. Timothy Chung reveals how competitions like the DARPA Subterranean Challenge encourage innovators to advance the field of robotics.
Robot as Servant
The 1980s promised robotic servants were in reach. They’d clean up our houses. Bring us drinks. Usher in an era of leisure. We didn’t get robot butlers. But if we look around, we’ll find an army of robotic servants already automating away domestic drudgery.
Richard Rowland recounts the extent to which Androbot over-promised on its ability to build a robot servant. 40 years later, we still don’t have robot maids. Monroe Kennedy III walks us through the complexities of seemingly simple tasks. To make things more difficult, each attempt to build a robot had to build the hardware AND write the code from scratch. Keenan Wyrobek explains that’s why he helped write and share the Robot Operating System (ROS). Leila Takayama describes how beneficial ROS was to the field of robotics. And Terry Fong shares how NASA is using ROS to build the robots that explore our solar system.
Command Line Heroes Season 8: Broadcasting the Robot Revolution
Robots have a special place in our imaginations. Writers, artists, directors, and more have shown how robots can change our world—for better or far, far worse. In the real world, robots seem a long way off. But are they? Season 8 of Command Line Heroes is all about the rise of the robots. They just may not be what you expect.
We meet the first industrial robot, take a journey through the uncanny valley, and investigate a possible robot crime. Season 8 covers the robots that are in our midst—and the determined dreamers who bring them to life.
The first episode drops September 7, 2021. Follow today and sign up for the newsletter to get the latest updates.
After the Bubble
The Y2K bug generated a lot of fear, but all that hype fizzled when the new millennium didn’t start with a digital apocalypse. It turns out that fear was just aimed at the wrong catastrophe. While plenty were riding high on the rise of the internet beyond the Y2K scare, another disaster had been brewing since 1995—and would bring them back down. But the dot-com bubble wasn’t the end. The internet was here to stay.
Not long after the turn of the millennium, the dot-com economy collapsed. Peter Relan points to the flawed business plans that fueled the dot-com bubble, and how many entrepreneurs and investors underestimated the complexity of building a business on the internet. Ernie Smith tells the story of Pets.com, and how a similar idea a decade later had a much better chance of succeeding. Gennaro Coufano reveals the element of luck that saved Amazon from going under —and how it evolved in the aftermath. Julia Furlan reflects on the changes the dot-com bubble brought, and what’s left to consider. And Brian McCullough describes how the dot-com bubble paved the way for a more resilient digital economy.
The World of the World Wide Web
1995 laid the groundwork for a truly global World Wide Web. But not every country took the same path to connecting to the internet. Some resisted, wanting to create their own version. Others had to fight for access, not wanting to be left behind. And while we made huge strides in connecting the world in those early years, we still have a long way to go.
Julien Mailland recounts the rollout of France’s Minitel service—how it was years ahead of the internet, but eventually lost its lead. Steve Goldstein explains what was involved in building the infrastructure to expand the NSFNET beyond the United States. Gianluigi Negro shares how China pushed for its connection, and how different it would be compared to the typical U.S. connection. And Christian O'Flaherty covers how costs weighed heavily on Argentina’s attempts to join the growing international network.