It was a bright summer day, and the boy grazed the cows at the edge of Great Plains. His equipment was usual at this time:
- a whip and a few spare poppers, because it’s always a consumable item
- a good pocket knife (it is good to have it on hand in the pasture)
- some sandwiches in his bag, that her mother had made for him
- raincoat (probably the most important one since there can always be a storm coming from North)
He dropped the raincoat into the dewy grass. He had breakfast with Picur with his herding dog, his most faithful companion, leaned down and stared at the mackerel-sky. Long days are spent grazing in the summer. It is time to carve something out of a piece of wood, read a book, or just daydream and think. We are writing August 30, 1983, and school is about to begin. As he stared at the sky, he was thinking of a career, wondering if he was an adult what he could do to make his teachers and his parents proud. He was sure he would do something that would be useful to people. He was convinced that man had to do much better than stand by the cows all day.
On the same day, a Korean Air 007 flight violated Soviet airspace over Kamchatka due to a malfunction of the gyroscope system. In the years of the Cold War, it ended, with the Soviets shooting down the airliner, no one surviving, 269 dead. This led to the announcement by US President Ronald Reagan that the satellite navigation system used only for military purposes will be made available for civilian use in the future.
Of course, the boy who was grazing the cows at that time had no idea that beyond the clouds, even if he didn’t see it, GPS satellites were circling over his head. And he had no idea that he would once become an electrical engineer and develop a tool with his team that was so small that it could fit in the ears of the animals. This smart earpiece recharges itself with solar cells and can receive signals from satellites so that it can track the exact position of the animals even when they are not around them all day.
The equipment has since changed:
- measuring instruments
- tools, a good tweezers
- soldering iron (and some spare soldering tips as it is always consumable)
But the goal is still the same: with our engineering team, we develop tools that help people and make their everyday work easier. An example of this is our ear-tag shaped zTrack GPS IoT tracker, which helps animal keepers. Our Artificial Intelligence software monitors grazing animals without the need for constant human presence, and can be checked at any time by the farmer, even on the display of his smartphone. While the product is being tested in a number of farms in both in Europe and the United States, me and my colleagues are working on further improving the product and scale-up the production.