What started as an artificial intelligence-based tool to track pets is being developed into what Gopher Protocol describes as a means for improving everything from the delivery of products to autonomous driving.
Based in San Diego, Gopher Protocol calls itself a “development stage” company that is using AI, the Internet of Things (IoT) and mobile technologies to create microchips that would be installed in any kind of mobile device. Its initial foray into the market has been the Guardian Orb Pet Tracker, which grew out of a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to offer pet owners a way of tracking animals via a smartphone app that connected to a spherical device hanging from their collars.
More recently, however, Gopher Protocol has announced plans to create a private form of mesh network, which consumers know as a way of blanketing their homes with Wi-Fi through a series of nodes. In this case, Gopher Protocol would send a location signal from one of its Orbs to the next using an AI application that figures out which are in range before connecting to a gateway.
According to Dr. Danny Rittman, Gopher Protocol’s CTO, the mesh network technology would take advantage of deep learning to identify which devices are “asleep” and, as necessary, wake them up so that users could enjoy strong coverage at all times.
“There are mesh technologies here and there that are very successful, but there are still lots of glitches, still lots of dead spots,” he told B2B News Network. “Companies are basically just accepting it because there’s simply nothing better. We’e going to offer a real mesh approach.”
Rittman said the firm’s mesh network technology could prove highly useful in areas like asset tracking, law enforcement and the tracking of medicines from a health-care provider or pharmaceutical firm to an actual patient.
“We do believe the ROI will be significant to major organizations that deal with security,” he said. “We’ve already received phone calls from car companies, pharma asking, ‘When I can purchase these devices and make a significant order?’ These are coming, but we are working by stages.”
Those stages not only include bringing finished products to market but continuing to experiment with a range of ideas and use cases. Gopher Protocol recently announced the launch of a spinoff called gNETCar, for instance, that will focus on autonomous car safety research using its proprietary tracking technology to provide an exact pin-point geo-location of an object without relying on only error-prone GPS data. This could make driverless vehicles safer, according to Rittman.
Other areas of research include the use of AI to create “smart drones” that deal with bad weather and avoid hitting vehicles.
Some of the more consumer-oriented services, like its pet tracker, may not represent Gopher Protocol’s long-term growth areas, Rittman admitted, but they can be helpful in getting across what its intellectual property could offer the enterprise market, whether it’s mobile parallel processing or mobile database management.
“It’s like we have a big closet with lots of drawers,” he said. “You can take these drawers and make a wider application from them. Tracking technology is one drawer.”