The humans behind Avidbots: Meet Dinkar Sharma
Avidbots’ diverse team of specialists help make Neo’s cleaning magic possible. But who are the minds behind these fully autonomous robotic wonders?
Today we’re delighted to profile Dinkar Sharma, a firmware developer at Avidbots. Working with the Mechatronics Engineering Team, Dinkar has been with Avidbots since March 2022.
We decided to pick Dinkar’s brain and draw some insights into life at Avidbots, as well as what he does outside of work to stay grounded and refreshed.
When did you first become interested in engineering?
I always had a curiosity about how things worked, really becoming interested in engineering during my undergrad. As a youngster, I would take apart RC cars, solar lights or any mechanical toy I had laying around. However, I struggled to assemble them back together!
My parents worked at BlackBerry when I was growing up, so that also gave me a glimpse into engineering. I liked what I saw.
What’s your role at Avidbots?
I’m a firmware developer at Avidbots. As part of the mechatronics team, we design and develop the core functionality for Neo and future Avidbots products. This includes everything from the robot platform and drivetrain to the cleaning system and safety features.
What does a typical day look like for you?
My work is hybrid, so I use that flexibility to plan my days accordingly. But I always start with a cup of coffee before work. A typical morning involves reading documentation, catching up on emails and helping team members. I have a strict lunch time at 12 p.m. because I get super hungry!
On days where I work from home, I mostly code, make design documents or participate in meetings. On days where I’m in the office, I’m testing code implementation on hardware and debugging/fixing bugs, with occasional ping-pong competitions when the mood hits.
How has working at Avidbots given you additional insights into firmware development?
I’m working with an unfamiliar computing platform, so this has given me an opportunity to delve deeper and learn the specifics. Secondly, the engineering processes are different from what I’m used to. Both of these experiences have helped deepen my knowledge and expand my skill set.
What surprised you most about Avidbots?
We’re a small but talented team, and everyone is helpful. It’s that combination — talent and togetherness — that was a pleasant surprise.
What’s your proudest moment over the past year?
I’m a people person, and I got to know everyone on my team. Learning about who they are and their past work experiences was personally and professionally enriching.
Who's your favorite robot besides Neo?
Tachikoma from the Ghost in the Shell anime. I like how they have human characteristics, with a voice and emotions to match.
What’s one thing about Neo someone may not know?
Neo’s named after The Matrix character. Although I watched the movie, I originally did not connect the dots.
If you were to take Neo out on a date, what type of food would you order?
An overloaded burrito. If I make a huge mess, Neo could help me clean. It’s the perfect combination; a recipe for true love!
If Neo could magically speak, what would be the first thing it would say?
Neo mimicking Keanu Reeves from the Matrix and saying, “I know kung fu.”
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