A ‘robot’ attended DIS. We interviewed him…

This is Carsten Christoph Krause, of knk Business Software, who attended DIS in machine form.

A 'robot' attends DIS in Berlin (Cobus Heyl)

What made you attend the conference in robot form today? 

“I’m located in Paris and I wanted to join the DIS too, without having a big journey, and so I used the Double-robot,” said Carsten Christoph Krause, managing director UK media at knk Business Software. “One reason is that my area of business has a really big market in the UK. I was already at the London Book Fair [the week before DIS], and I [had] quite a lot of work on my desk! So this was a much faster way to attend the conference…”

How easy is it to navigate an event like this through portable video-conferencing technology? 

“It’s not too easy to be honest: the distances look a little closer than they are in real life. So you have to test it a little until one gets used to it. It’s a little bit like playing a Formula 1 racing game for example – you need to get a feeling for how the machine reacts, how fast the robot is, the distances, how crowded the room is and so on. But after 5-10mins you’re good to go… until then though I never had any problem at all and never bumped into someone!” 

Is this a form of tech that you use often?  

“Absolutely. We have one in each of our offices in Hamburg and the US, and we use it on a regular basis as it’s very, very convenient for several tasks. If you think of all the meetings we all have these days, and particularly the travel around them, it can sometimes mean to travel for two days. With this, I don’t need to do that anymore: I don’t need a flight, I don’t need a hotel, I don’t need a taxi from the airport to the hotel, and so on and so on.” 

“I did, or I do unfortunately, quite a lot of video conferences, and what I don’t like about them is that you’re looking into a fixed direction. You never see the people speaking. You hear them yes, but you never see them, and that means you lose quite a lot of information because so much is transported by mimic. With this you can physically turn to each of them and when whiteboards are used…”

And finally, how did you enjoy the DIS in robot form?  

“Yes it was quite interesting… I’ve met quite a lot of people I haven’t met in a long time to be fair, and could catch up with. It was also nice just driving around and scaring publishers a little bit ;)”  

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