Chuan Angelo Yu and his Team
Architect, founder of the startup HexAirbot (now called FleXbot), maker, and co-founder of FabLab Guiyang
A team of young high-tech inventors led by moneyed architect Chuan Angelo Yu have founded a startup called HexAirbot. With breathtaking enthusiasm and immense expertise, they use open source information to develop robots with featherweight hardware, and manufacture them using 3D printers and ingenious software. Their drones fly, the autopilot works.
They seek contact to like-minded developers all over the world. They fight for, and get, entry visas and access that will allow them to attend the Maker Faire in Silicon Valley. In the Promised Land, they meet with Chris Anderson, an entrepreneur who knows all the tricks of the trade and is a head taller than them all. The encounter brings them to the finish line of realizing their dream: being accepted into the global community of high-tech pioneers. Not only will Anderson sell their product worldwide, he will also have it built in Mexico, where the process will be fully automated and thus no more expensive than in China.
As the young developers travel back to China, the mood suddenly switches from euphoria to contemplation:
“If Anderson is taking over everything, what will be left for our company to do?”
“Count money, do more research, and keep developing.”
In the months that follow, the team launches a highly successful crowdfunding campaign on kickstarter.com. They raise an incredible US$563,721 from 4,670 small-scale investors. This is a first for China, and the team drinks a hearty toast to the achievement.
“A new technological revolution or trend is very often influenced by makers like us. It’s the same with drones. DIY drones are all the rage in China, Europe, and Silicon Valley. Everyone hacks and uses the components in drones of their own. That’s how a simple remote-controlled airplane becomes a flying robot.”
“I enjoy getting to grips with new technologies. Once I’ve understood them, I like to show them to other people. My motivation as an entrepreneur is this: I want to democratize technology. Technology must be widely disseminated. And you need people for that. Only then does it have a value. If technology is in the hands of a few universities and large corporations, it does develop, as is the case with drones, but then it is only used by the military or governments.”