What can autonomous vehicles learn from the automation of medicine? Brachium CEO & Founder Yaz Shehab joins Bryan and Alex to explain how he plans to replace your trip to the dentist with a robot that can clean your teeth—and why that robot probably won’t also perform your root canals anytime soon. What does the FDA think of robot dentists, and what does that mean for self-driving cars? On this episode, we debate the similarities between robotic health care, plus how machines can earn (or break) our trust.

Listen On
Apple
Google
Spotify
iHeart Radio
Share

View Episode Transcript

Episode Transcript

 Alex Roy
Welcome to the No Parking Podcast. As always, I’m Alex Roy, here with my friend and co-host, Bryan Salesky.

Bryan Salesky
Hey, Alex.

Alex Roy
Bryan, I probably don’t go to the dentist as often as I should. One of the things that I hate about going to the dentist is that from time to time, there’s a dental assistant, who is a little rough.

Bryan Salesky
I probably go to the dentist more often than I’d like…I’ll put it that way. This episode, I got to tell you, I’m pro robot in a lot of facets. This one? I had some questions.

Alex Roy
Because this week we have a gentleman named Yaz Shehab. He’s the co founder and CEO of a company called Brachium. A startup, although they’re a few years old, that is building medical dental robots. As you can imagine, this requires a lot of R&D around well everything that matters in autonomous vehicles, except that it goes in your mouth.

Bryan Salesky
What’s cool is he’s done real trials with it and he’s gotten consumer feedback. It was pretty interesting to hear what he had to say.

Alex Roy
You almost cannot believe what he’s doing. You have to hear it for yourself. Let’s just get right into it.

Bryan Salesky
…The architecture so gorgeous, everything is colorful and clean and bright and beautiful. It’s beautiful. Amazing place.

Yaz Shehab
Awesome.

Alex Roy
Guys. We could talk about that all day but I want to understand something.

Yaz Shehab
Yes, sir.

Alex Roy
Yaz, you mean to tell me you make a robot that does dentistry on children?

Bryan Salesky
What are you doing, dude?

Yaz Shehab
Yes, that would be correct. Yes. Guilty.

Bryan Salesky
But not your children, other peoples children.

Yaz Shehab
I don’t have children. That’s right. That’s a really good point. Thank you.

Alex Roy
That’s cheating, isn’t it?

Yaz Shehab
Slightly.

Alex Roy
It’s a big cactus to swallow to believe a car could drive itself in traffic, but it’s starting to work…right? I have a baby and putting her in front of a robot, how does THAT work?

Yaz Shehab
Does she have teeth yet?

Alex Roy
Yes.

Yaz Shehab
All right. Can she come by the office next week?

Alex Roy
No. We’ll get to the trust thing in a second. I would like you, could you please explain to Bryan and I…

Bryan Salesky
My dentist is going to so pissed when he hears this episode.

Alex Roy
What’s the company called? Why did you launch it? How does it work? How in the hell do you believe anyone’s going to want to trust that thing?

Yaz Shehab
Wow, these are really good questions. I’m getting three questions at once.

Alex Roy
You start wherever you want to start.

Yaz Shehab
All right, company…we are Brachium. We’ve been around for about five years right now. We are in the autonomous healthcare space, dentistry-

Yaz Shehab
Wait…what?

Bryan Salesky
Autonomous health care?

Yaz Shehab
That’s right. Yes, sir. Dentistry is our first step, obviously into a world where we see millions and millions of our pods that people come in and get primary healthcare. We’re not surgical robots. We don’t do surgery. That’s a totally different ball of wax. I’ll leave it up to science fiction for now. We’re really interested about the value proposition, how we can bring down, level the playing field and bring down the cost and access to healthcare. Again dentistry gives us a really good business case because the type of treatments we do are non invasive. They are non threatening. It’s not really any kind of a life risk type situation.

Bryan Salesky
Make it real for us. Give us an example of a treatment that we could get done autonomously.

Yaz Shehab
You can come in, you sit in an upright chair, you rest your forehead, you rest your chin, and we can do a cleaning. We don’t touch your teeth, and we can do a dental checkup diagnostic non-X ray pretty quickly.

Bryan Salesky
You’ll do a cleaning?

Yaz Shehab
We do a cleaning.

Bryan Salesky
What do you use to clean?

Yaz Shehab
We use a process called prophy cleaning. It’s a mixture of spray water, air and special powders.

Bryan Salesky
This is like a water jet for your teeth.

Yaz Shehab
Yes, it’s a power wash for your teeth.

Bryan Salesky
Water jets are a horrible example actually. Actually it would be neat if you could drill… Anyway, let’s not go there. So you clean with… It’s a power wash for your teeth. That’s so awesome.

Yaz Shehab
We do.

Bryan Salesky
That’s amazing. I have a very thorough hygienist.

Yaz Shehab
Do you like her?

Bryan Salesky
Her name’s Tiffany. She’s wonderful. She’s very nice. She’s extremely thorough, yes.

Yaz Shehab
How would you feel if we were to replace her?

Bryan Salesky
Oh, well, I’m not sure. I’m curious is, have you done any studies that compares the quality of the cleaning for human to the robot? I’m sure you have, what does that look like?

Yaz Shehab
Yes, right now we finished our first set of clinical trials about a year ago and we are up about 17% better than the standard of care that a human can do…which we’re really grateful and proud of that. I want to go back to Tiffany, because here’s the point. Out of the gate, we did a lot of market research. Hundreds and hundreds of people, interviewed qual quants, all that stuff.

Yaz Shehab
We really need to understand the value proposition. Number one, why does the world need a dental robot first of all? Why does someone need a self driving car? Who cares? We had to go to the foundation of our vision in the business which is around, what is it that we’re contributing in an ethical and human way to the world? Drilling, we started out like most startups over to the left, and you pivot. Our early prototypes, were doing invasive stuff on teeth. Crown preps, drilling, all those things.

Yaz Shehab
You take that to market and almost every dentist said, “Oh my gosh, this is great. I make more money, less chair time, better quality, consistency.” Almost every patient says, “Not so fast. Your comment, you have a drill on a robot arm, and I’m awake sitting in a chair? That’s not going to fly.”

Alex Roy
Did you have to put blindfolds on them before the thing comes out?

Bryan Salesky
I have to say I’m a roboticist. I’ve studied the failure modes of many of these types of systems. I would not sit in that chair with the drill coming at me with an autonomous robot, I just wouldn’t. I wouldn’t do it.

Yaz Shehab
Even with a highly tuned collaborative robot with all the sensors and the vision systems and haptics?

Bryan Salesky
I wouldn’t do it. It’s too close quarters for me.

Alex Roy
But a car is no problem.

Bryan Salesky
It is…I know.

Alex Roy
The thing is going 70 miles an hour.

Bryan Salesky
Well, easy.

Alex Roy
25.

Bryan Salesky
We’re operating in the city right now. Look, anyway, continue on.

Yaz Shehab
To your point, I find this discussion fascinating because here you are. I’m talking to-

Bryan Salesky
I find it fascinating too, I know it’s weird I’m saying this. Isn’t it?

Yaz Shehab
No, but this is a roboticist and a co-founder, by the way, he’s a roboticist from the car industry. It’s really interesting that we’re having this conversation today because he understands these failure modes and we are using a collaborative robotic arm obviously modified with our autonomous navigation and the sensors and all those things that they can happen. Part of our challenge early on is trust. I think this is what our businesses share in common because at the end of the day, it’s about safety.

Alex Roy
It’s all about safety and trust.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely. How do you build the trust? How do you build trust with another human being that is fundamentally wired to put more trust in another human being? How many times do you go and say, “Hey, do you have a good dentist? Do you have a good doctor?” What does that mean?

Bryan Salesky
Right.

Alex Roy
No one ever says no. Because they don’t want to admit that they didn’t do the research.

Yaz Shehab
I have a horrible doctor, don’t go to her. To your point, yes, we had to do all the KHSs, the key hazardous situations and analysis and look at the likelihood of us nicking someone all the way to a huge failure mode. We have the trickle down and safety systems, we have all these things, but at the end of the day, for us it’s about the human. It’s about the user experience. It’s about making it fun.

Yaz Shehab
If the experience really isn’t fun and perceived like, “I’m not going to sit behind this torture machine,” you lost that game.

Bryan Salesky
You definitely have. To be clear, you tried autonomous tooth drilling and crowns and so on and people just didn’t want to use it and so then you went to cleaning instead or do you actually do all of these things today?

Yaz Shehab
It’s a platform play for us. The platform is capable of doing dental and other non dental, primary care, dermatology, eye exams, et cetera. In the early days, we obviously on mannequins, we tried out all different procedures. From a technology standpoint, that wasn’t the barrier. Really the barrier is the product market fit, how do you take a product to market that makes sense, both economic sense, ethical sense and has that trust?

Yaz Shehab
That’s been our challenge all along. I’m going to do a hat tip to a group out of Embry Riddle University, the Human Factors group. They do autonomous cars, they do aviation and they actually have done extensive research on robotic dentistry. At a certain point, you should just give them a call because they have some really interesting perspectives that has helped us a lot around that human factors and the human experience…how you get that done.

Bryan Salesky
Wow.

Alex Roy
You’re going to tell us what their insight was?

Yaz Shehab
The insight in our case, how do you build the trust around…they have this big huge equation. Literally from thousands of people that they surveyed. The heaviest weighing factor was fun, followed by trust.

Alex Roy
What does the robot look like? Is it a Pokemon?

Yaz Shehab
Wouldn’t you like to know?

Alex Roy
I would like to know. Yes. It obviously doesn’t look like… does it look like EVE from Wall E? Because she’s cool. Wait a second. You’ve seen Wall-E right, Bryan? Why are you making a face?

Bryan Salesky
Of course, yes.

Alex Roy
Wouldn’t you agree that clearly somebody was at Pixar…they had to have hired someone like Alex McDowell, or somebody to come in and say, “Make us the most feminine attractive robot possible.” That’s EVE.

Bryan Salesky
Absolutely. What you’re saying is not crazy. I’m waiting for Yaz’s answer.

Alex Roy
Sorry to interrupt.

Yaz Shehab
No, not at all. In another lifetime I used to be in consumer electronics space. One of the things that we made a commitment to with this company that this cannot and should not look like a medical device. It should look more like a Disney ride. We do have a heads up display, we have a whole entertainment system, the whole that. You’re sitting in an upright and comfortable position. We’re trying to…working with some top industrial design firms out there. Really the focus is on creating a comfortable, inviting, warm and engaging experience with that.

Bryan Salesky
I approach this very friendly looking robot, I put my chin on something, I open my mouth and I get basically the equivalent of a car wash for my teeth.

Yaz Shehab
Yes, in three minutes.

Bryan Salesky
Do I get to select a flavor? Does it taste like anything?

Yaz Shehab
I think we have contemplated that.

Bryan Salesky
They’d be cool. You can have upcharges for the more popular exotic flavors. Think about this it’s amazing product marketing.

Yaz Shehab
It is. What you’re pointing to now is a level of customization and data intelligence and gathering that you can use so the next time you come and sit behind our system, we know what you like, and we know what flavor, and we also know that tooth number 13 is more sensitive than number 12. We can engage and adjust it.

Bryan Salesky
So it’s power washing tooth by tooth?

Yaz Shehab
It is. It does the whole mouth, that is correct.

Bryan Salesky
I need a visual of this thing. This is cool.

Yaz Shehab
We have videos but we can’t show them online.

Alex Roy
To power wash doesn’t the device have to get into your mouth and behind your teeth?

Yaz Shehab
That’s correct.

Alex Roy
What is to prevent, someone sits in this thing, you put your chin on the thing, and then you have your forehead against the thing—

Yaz Shehab
Correct.

Alex Roy
Then the thing goes in your mouth, what if someone pulls away? Just jerks, pulls away. You have this thing inside their mouth, hooked around their teeth.

Yaz Shehab
You’re asking how we solved these problems over the last four to five years?

Yaz Shehab
Yes, it’s a lot of control systems. We operate on a micron level. We have a much more limited set of variables than you guys do. You have to see the whole world.

Bryan Salesky
In some ways, I’m envious of that. Absolutely.

Yaz Shehab
It’s a controlled environment. A highly controlled environment.

Bryan Salesky
But everybody’s… Just like there’s different shapes and sizes of pedestrians and cars and so on. There’s different shapes and sizes teeth and different numbers of teeth and different configurations of teeth. It’s constrained but you to get the same quality cleaning of someone who has perfect teeth because orthodontics was a thing when they grew up, versus someone who’s older and maybe it wasn’t a thing, that’s got to be tough.

Yaz Shehab
It is. It’s been a challenge. Especially I think in the early days, we ran… I’m sure we got stranded in all these problems. You get the data, you get the point cloud, and you get all the collision algorithms. In the early mannequin trials that we were doing, we’ll see the robot stop because what happens if you’re missing a tooth?

Bryan Salesky
Exactly.

Yaz Shehab
There’s a gap. How do you solve that?

Bryan Salesky
That’s right.

Yaz Shehab
Exactly.

Bryan Salesky
Do you give the patient a little joystick they can assist?

Bryan Salesky
There’s a parallel here, self driving cars.

Bryan Salesky
When it can’t handle something, you can have a human assisted, right? It’s a serious question.

Yaz Shehab
Yes, I think that’s an excellent question because I think the parallel is…would people trust a self driving car with or without a steering wheel? Would they trust an autonomous airplane with or without a pilot? Would you trust a robot with or without an attendant or without the joystick?

Yaz Shehab
The patient can actually have a sense of control and they do have safety buttons and redundant systems. We always want to give agency to the person who’s there.

Bryan Salesky
Okay, that’s good.

Yaz Shehab
The more you remove that link, then trust, as much fun as you think you’re going to make it becomes an issue.

Bryan Salesky
You make this pretty friendly looking machine and do you find that that’s all it takes, people trust it? You explain how it works. You’ve obviously gone to the human factors, you simplified it as much as possible. Give them a quick tutorial. Boom. Do you find that they use it? They’re excited about it. What have you found?

Yaz Shehab
Yes, I have to be careful how I answer that because we have a limited data set. We’ve done clinical trials on 50 patients. That’s what I can talk to, but these 50 patients were unique because one, they were teenagers. I think the average age was about 14. The data that came back, which fascinated me were comments like, “Can I Instagram this?”

Bryan Salesky
So long as there’s a phone in front of their face while there’s this thing in their mouth, then it’s okay.

Yaz Shehab
Right or, “Can I tell kids at school that a robot cleaned my teeth?”

Bryan Salesky
I love it.

Yaz Shehab
You start thinking, when is the last time you went to a dentist and you said, “Hey, can I Instagram this dental drill or this x ray machine?” You start looking on how that experience is fundamentally different. We are really not trying to replace or change the dental hygiene or diagnostic experience. We’re trying to reimagine it totally differently. What would that be like?

Alex Roy
What is the real benefit here? Is it shortening the cleaning time? Is it costs? Is it reliability? Is it all of them? What happens to dental hygienists? Are they just not necessary anymore? Are they just suboptimal?

Yaz Shehab
Again, we are really trying to augment what a dental hygienist does. We’re not here in replacement. We’re here to provide access and ultimately its quality of care. Quality of care as we define it is the patient experience. I believe we are in a patient experience business. That’s the business that we’re in and the quality of care is around consistency, efficacy, obviously safety at all times, and giving access to a multitude of patients around shorter treatment time at lower costs.

Yaz Shehab
We envision the same way… I get my flu shot every year. I don’t go to my doctor for a flu shot, I usually go to Walgreens at this point. We envision a world that these pods that we build are not necessarily in a dentist office.

Alex Roy
They’re not personally owned, are they? Could they be? Is it like a self driving vehicle that it makes sense that they be fleet operated, fleet maintained, in order to maintain consistency and reliability, they’re never personally owned?

Yaz Shehab
That’s a great question. We’re actually looking at both scenarios of business cases right now.

Bryan Salesky
Imagine like, “Man, I would love to go to Alex’s house.”

Alex Roy
To get your teeth cleaned?

Bryan Salesky
He’s got a great sound system, and this really cool teeth cleaning machine.

Alex Roy
There’s teeth whitening kits today, but if you went to Walgreens 10 years ago, you had to get a prescription. You couldn’t just buy that stuff because it was toxic.

Yaz Shehab
It takes us to regulation which is a point that I really want to touch on because I think this is one of the things that we share and I don’t know your viewpoint on it. Personally, I’m a fan of the FDA. I think the FDA is a wonderful agency. We all in business wants some level of regulation, but not too much.

Bryan Salesky
It would be the Wild West without it, it’d be quite dangerous, right?

Yaz Shehab
Exactly. What we found is in the FDA, where they exist for safety and efficacy, that’s what they want. Do you do what you claim you do and are you safe? Coming from… my background is in software and digital media. Coming from that world, just build it, compile it, deploy it, it breaks-

Bryan Salesky
I wish I knew what that was like my whole career.

Yaz Shehab
Should have been a DJ Bryan.

Bryan Salesky
I should have, I now. Picked a hard line of work, Yaz.

Yaz Shehab
You picked the hard line of work, Bryan. But seriously, we believe that the FDA gives our segment or at least our business the credibility. I was pitching an investor six months ago and I said, our IP has been derisked. Our technology has been derisked. He was like, “If I had a dime for every entrepreneur who says my technology has been derisked.” We really have derisked it. We did an IRB approved FDA clinical trial. You don’t mess around with that unless you’re some other company that we won’t mention.

Bryan Salesky
What’s IRB?

Yaz Shehab
Independent Review Board. We like regulation, because it also, from a business standpoint, constitutes a barrier. I do agree with you, no one wants to be in in an overly regulated environment in business, but you want to give people the message that, “Look, I am safe and effective.”

Bryan Salesky
How many FDAs are there?

Yaz Shehab
One FDA.

Bryan Salesky
That’s right. We feel the same way as long as there’s one unified framework, our challenge is, until there’s a federal framework, each state and even each city is looking to create policies and regulations for how autonomous vehicles operate in their domain and so it becomes quite challenging. In DC in particular, where we operate and test today. In any given operating area, we could be within three different state lines. That could be three different set of rules that we have to follow.

Bryan Salesky
This is actually our challenge. We welcome regulation, we welcome thoughtful policy making and we want to help establish that to ensure safety and some operating rules of how this gets fielded, how autonomous vehicles get fielded. We’re looking to get a unified framework so that this patchwork doesn’t develop.

Yaz Shehab
I’m really curious. I really don’t want to be in your shoes at this juncture.

Bryan Salesky
That’s an understatement.

Alex Roy
That’s how I feel about some of your patients.

Bryan Salesky
I don’t take that personally.

Yaz Shehab
How are you supposed to operate and deploy under this non regulatory regulatory mix?

Bryan Salesky
Thankfully, we’re still at an early stage, it’s still very nascent. There’s a number of places where actually no regulation exist. What we’re doing is we’re working with those cities at a local level, to educate what we’re about, how it works, what makes sense, what works, what doesn’t work from a policy perspective. We’re helping to inform the equation. We’re hoping that that helps us afford the time necessary to then get to that unified framework.

Alex Roy
I’m curious, though, when you started the company, what hoops… Who did you call? What research do you have to do regarding what regulations were relevant? Because medical robotics is not that old a field, somebody had to have been the first people to call the FDA and say, we’re building this thing. What did that look like?

Yaz Shehab
That’s a great question. That was part of our challenge early on, is, who do you call? Especially in our field that we’re doing autonomous dental robotics, there isn’t really any comp that we can refer to in terms of business or even in terms of regulatory. You had to look out there at the landscape. Going back to the mid 90s, early 2000, obviously, you have Intuitive Surgical who does telematics. It’s joystick, it’s controlled. That’s not what we do at this point.

Alex Roy
Are you familiar with those guys, Bryan?

Bryan Salesky
Yes, absolutely.

Yaz Shehab
Actually intuitive surgical has had a really good and powerful history and I have a lot of respect for the company. Came out of a group out of SRI and I did some work with the guys at Johns Hopkins.

Bryan Salesky
They’ve had a huge impact. What they have is, has just a huge impact on the post surgical outcomes. It’s much faster to heal, less painful for the patient and so on.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely. But again, it takes us into that space of the whole world of medical robotics, how it’s divided, how it’s segmented, is it autonomous, is it non autonomous. Really, part of what we had to do with the FDA is a lot of data.

Bryan Salesky
Education.

Yaz Shehab
Education.

Bryan Salesky
We’re in the same boat.

Yaz Shehab
We have a 12 minute video that we produce for the FDA and you just want… It’s dry, it’s factual, but it’s like, here’s how it works. Here’s what we’re doing. Because put yourself in the shoes of the FDA. It’s a wild west. Really is a wild west. You have all these startups come to them it’s like, I have a robot that’s going to work on human beings, blah, blah, blah, and trust me, it’s safe, and it’s effective. I’m like, well, wait a minute, what? What are you doing? That’s tough man, that’s tough.

Bryan Salesky
They’re in a tough position. I’m sure you follow the same policy we do which is just be as transparent as you can about how you do it, what the process looks like. The redundancy, the failure modes that you’ve contemplated, and how you address those. What the medications are. This is a little bit of safety speak but I’m sure it’s very similar in your world, right? I find that when you have that open dialogue, you can make a lot of headway.

Yaz Shehab
I really like how you utilize that word transparency because one of the things that we got early kudos on from the FDA is we engage with them at the concept stage.

Bryan Salesky
Exactly.

Yaz Shehab
We were super early to the point, “Should you guys be here?” At the end of the day, what we heard was, “Hey, thank you for coming in early. We often have a lot of companies that come in after working on a product for five years, and they say here it is just rubber stamp it for me.”

Bryan Salesky
It’s all about relationships at the end of the day.

Yaz Shehab
It’s all about relationships and it builds the trust.

Alex Roy
You’re familiar, Yaz, with the Elaine Herzberg incident in Arizona?

Yaz Shehab
I am. From what I read in the papers. What are your thoughts on that?

Alex Roy
Well, my thoughts are well known. Was there such an incident in medical robotics? Was there like a come to Jesus moment where people had to really come back to the table and talk about what they’re doing in order to maintain trust with the regulators and the users?

Yaz Shehab
Yes. I’m personally not aware of such incidents or such instance that got that much exposure in the world. I think so far in medical robotics, since there is always a highly skilled surgeon operating some joystick in a regulated environment, in an OR, if such incidents happen, there is a reporting structure to the FDA. There is the malpractice insurance. I don’t know if that happens, how much the general public will even hear about it. I think this is something we’re hyper aware of in our company because we are really doing treatments, again, non surgical non invasive on people who are awake.

Alex Roy
What is the… A dentist has malpractice insurance. Does that cover the behavior of the robot? Who owns the robot? You don’t sell to the dentist? How does that work?

Yaz Shehab
Again, it’s a wild west. I think we will see these cases on a state by state scenario as we deploy in multiple states. At the end of the day if the machine is inside a regulated place, which initially it has to be.

Alex Roy
But Walmart is not regulated like a doctor’s office.

Yaz Shehab
If you were actually doing a flu shot in Walmart, there is still a certain level of regulation. It’s not a Walmart employee who’s giving the flu shot. It’s someone who’s qualified that is licensed-

Alex Roy
In that state.

Yaz Shehab
In that state. Now we go into state regulation.

Alex Roy
There’s one FDA but there are still state by state regulations.

Yaz Shehab
One FDA for safety and efficacy, state by state for what is the definition of conducting medical or dental treatment? We can see some states would allow a dental hygienist to do X Y Z or whether they extract teeth or they do cleaning and so forth. What is the art of practicing a medical treatment or dental treatment?

Alex Roy
Outside the United States, how do other markets vary in terms of regulatory approval and culture for acceptance of robots like yours?

Yaz Shehab
It’s a great question. We started looking at overseas markets about a year ago and were really shocked. Some countries you need a letter to file. You basically file a letter saying, “Here’s what I have. It’s good to go.” Within 60, 90 days, you got a piece of paper saying, “Go ahead, do it.” Some countries you have years of-

Alex Roy
Could you provide us a list of those countries without recording this on this podcast?

Yaz Shehab
I’m on it.

Alex Roy
Just send it to Bryan. Is that closely guarded confidential information? I guess it would be.

Yaz Shehab
I think it’s public information. You can just Google which country—

Bryan Salesky
We have a number of lawyers that would love to assist you in uncovering that information.

Alex Roy
Hundred of thousands of legal fees can be saved.

Bryan Salesky
Let’s bring us back to trust though. I know that you’ve done limited studies, it’s 50 people, but what did you learn about how to get people to trust this system? Recognizing even though they’re teenagers, I’m sure some were a little bit apprehensive. What did you find out?

Yaz Shehab
What we found out really is, if you look at the top of the funnel sort of speak, the initial barrier is that of apprehension. It’s a new device. They haven’t seen it, they haven’t heard about it. Is this going to work? Should it be sitting behind this? We obviously have to sign all sorts of paperwork, releases and so forth. We find that the parents are the ones who are actually more apprehensive. The children are more eager because they are likely to adapt any new technology. They feel much more comfortable. Even the feedback that we got was, this was much faster, easier, better than my XYZ dentist, hygienist, et cetera.

Bryan Salesky
Then how did you get the parents on board with it?

Yaz Shehab
They were there in the room, they saw for themselves. After the treatment, they asked little Susie or little Johnny, “How was it?” “Oh my gosh, this was fantastic. Can I do it again? Can I get another go round?” Now the parents like, “Wait a minute, can I do this as an adult?”

Bryan Salesky
Nice. Was there anything in the design of the system that helped them get comfortable with it and whether it be aesthetics or some other design elements?

Yaz Shehab
Honestly, Bryan, not at the time. We did the clinical trials with a… I wouldn’t call a sexy system by any means.

Bryan Salesky
That in and of itself is a really interesting data point. You didn’t need any of that to get them to use it.

Yaz Shehab
We’re very grateful for that.

Alex Roy
Must have saved a lot of money. Did it look like a lawn mower? What did It look like?

Yaz Shehab
Oh, my goodness. It didn’t look like a Disney-

Alex Roy
Like a box of steak knives. Design comes in a lot of flavors.

Yaz Shehab
I’ll tell you one data point.

Bryan Salesky
You want me to put my face in what? Have you seen this thing?

Alex Roy
Looks like a paper shredder. It’s 99.9% the same.

Bryan Salesky
I’m sorry this is terrible.

Yaz Shehab
This is all good.

Bryan Salesky
You didn’t know you were going to got through this sort of torture, did you?

Yaz Shehab
The coffee is good here.

Alex Roy
Think about it, there are people out there… There’s some futurist who said, “All the self driving cars are going to be so safe. They won’t even need airbags or doors or anything. You just going to get in. It’s the best.”

Bryan Salesky
Not all the cars will be self driving. You still need all those things because of the other drivers on the road.

Yaz Shehab
You just said the other drivers on the road, this is what… We talked about quality of care. Why we’re doing this is we believe at a certain point the masses whether you agree with it or not, would pick up a Starbucks coffee like we are right now. Because it’s a standard. You know what you’re getting from Starbucks. We believe one day people will go as well, “I want to place with a Brachium system. I know what I’m getting, or a place with your vehicles because they know what they’re getting

Bryan Salesky
You didn’t research where the bean came from and how it was roasted in that whole supply chain, did you?

Yaz Shehab
No.

Bryan Salesky
It’s right.

Yaz Shehab
Not today.

Alex Roy
It’s funny how all we really want is we want reliability. We want to know what we’re going to get no matter what it is.

Yaz Shehab
Yes, at some point, what if the self driving car can give you that quality of care, what if it gives you quality which trumps all the drivers or so called bad drivers out there and everybody complains about?

Bryan Salesky
Honestly what it is is no one person… Typically, no one person is on the road for that long of a time each day. Certainly we all have our anecdotes of bad drivers. What we don’t realize is that that bad behavior we witness one out of 10 trips, or maybe, I don’t know, if you have a long commute, maybe it’s every trip, but we have short memories. We forget that those things are happening every single day. Every minute of every day in every city, The frequency is very high.

Bryan Salesky
There’s no good data around just how high it is. I can tell you after… Now that we’re running a very large fleet of cars across many numerous cities, we see red light runners, people who fly through intersections, folks who are in the right most lane making last minute judgments and going all the way to the left in the middle of an intersection cutting people off. Misconstruing traffic signs. This happens every single day. We see the examples.

Bryan Salesky
That’s the case and how to describe that to people is a little bit hard. I guess I would love to take the videos and just post them on our website, “Here’s all the bad drivers we encountered today.” To sort of make the point that humans are just flawed drivers, period. Are there parallels to how you think about what you’re doing?

Yaz Shehab
Yes, absolutely. I’ll tell you but I also have a question for you. In our world, when a patient comes in, their concerns are around quality of care, around cost, around treatment time, around safety, around fear, around anxiety, and we have to address all these things. Let’s face it, not a lot of people like to go to see a dentist, not even dentists.

Bryan Salesky
That’s true.

Yaz Shehab
Our bar is pretty high, first of all, to say, “You know the dental experience that you not really happy about, well, we going to deliver it to you and with a robot.” That’s our world.

Bryan Salesky
Will it be cheaper than a current dentist?

Yaz Shehab
It’s cheaper and shorter time. That’s our value prop. Absolutely. To that effect, what keeps me up at night is that patient experience. Really, it’s the trust, the patient experience. To your point, the data that we have lead us to believe that our patients when they sit behind or inside the spot, they’re thinking about these factors. They’re nervous, they’re a little bit anxious. They’re thinking about all these things.

Yaz Shehab
Now, I’m curious, when the average driver goes in a car, what are they thinking about in a self… Are they thinking about how fast I’m going to get there? Or are they be thinking about, “Oh my gosh, is this going to be safe and effective?”

Bryan Salesky
Yes, when an average rider does.

Yaz Shehab
Right, thank you.

Bryan Salesky
What we find is that most of the time, actually I think I can say just about… I think I can say every time. Even if they’re nervous, when they get in, they’re hyper aware of what’s happening and paying attention and attuned to how well the computer is driving the car. What we find is that if we provide a display in the car that allows them to see what the computer is thinking, they can look out the window and they can see oh, the pedestrian up ahead… The computer sees the pedestrians, it’s on the screen.

Bryan Salesky
All they have to do is after a very few short minutes, they compare and they become instantly at ease when they see that display. They say, “Oh wow, what I see with my own two eyes on the computer, outside the car matches what’s on the on the screen.” Then all the sudden very quickly after a few minutes. They usually get pretty comfortable and all of a sudden they’re commenting on all the other bad drivers. “I can’t believe they cut us off. I can’t believe what that person just did.”

Bryan Salesky
It’s unbelievable. This is a pretty interesting human factors thing what I’m telling you here. It just shows you how a few thoughtful elements that gives a person some confidence, what’s on that screen is a confidence booster that we’ve got you. In fact, we see more than you do when you’re as a human driver. It puts people at ease very quickly.

Yaz Shehab
What I’m hearing you say there is a certain point in the cognitive experience when a rider gets in, there trying to match with their expectations, and what they’re seeing on a display and what’s an outside world and that bridges the trust in their mind.

Bryan Salesky
That’s exactly right. The reality is that the computer is able to process far more information than the human can at any given moment in time. What you see on that screens sometimes are dozens of pedestrians, if it’s really busy. Sometimes you’ll see it on the screen. You look outside and say, “Wait, where is that? Oh, it was behind that thing. I didn’t even necessarily see that.” Then they really get confidence when they find that out.

Yaz Shehab
That’s fantastic. You guys enable that?

Bryan Salesky
Absolutely.

Yaz Shehab
That’s super cool.

Alex Roy
What happens if your robot looks in my mouth and see something it doesn’t like? Does it tell me on a screen? Or does it wait to wrap things up and then the dentist comes out and says we got to talk?

Bryan Salesky
Does it give you a grade of how well you cleaned leading up to that?

Yaz Shehab
So… Boy.

Alex Roy
I hate going to the doctor… Talk about matching expectations to outcomes.

Bryan Salesky
Tiffany gives me my report card. She says, “Look, this one area you got to spend more time Bryan.”

Alex Roy
That diet soda is not working out for you.

Yaz Shehab
Does she floss shame you is that…

Alex Roy
Is that a thing? Floss shaming?

Yaz Shehab
Come on, everybody gets it. I’m actually pretty good in the floss territory. It’s like for whatever reason, my brushing technique, I miss a particular section. I don’t get it. I don’t know, I’m checking my email or something. I’m not sure. Now we’re talking about feedback and data. Part of the value prop is… and part of the reason that we chose to enter in dentistry.

Yaz Shehab
Dentistry is a really interesting field. It’s off to the side of medical. It is not really data rich. Tiffany sounds like an exception. She sounds wonderful.

Bryan Salesky
She’s excellent.

Yaz Shehab
You’ve got to recommend me to Tiffany, by the way.

Bryan Salesky
I will. Why is it not data rich? Because Dentists don’t work out of hospitals?

Yaz Shehab
It’s not data rich. It’s not so much the hospital. I think historically, this segment has lagged in innovation behind healthcare. There’s more of a perception, it’s like, well this is dentistry. It’s not… I’ve had investors, prominent investors out of the med tech community telling me, “That’s not real health care. It’s dentistry.”

Bryan Salesky
Oh, come on. Hang on a second.

Yaz Shehab
I swear to God.

Bryan Salesky
That’s ridiculous. I mean, everyone… My dentist tells me all the time, he says one of the… They’re finding out that one of the leading causes of heart disease is actually if you don’t have your teeth cleaned on regular basis.

Alex Roy
What?

Yaz Shehab
Heart disease, premature birth, diabetes, all the things that—

Alex Roy
Because it’s indicative of other things or-

Bryan Salesky
No, it’s a cause. Alex, it’s big.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely. It takes us back into perception, education. Part of what we’re trying to do with our diagnostic suite is we do give you a report card with visuals, with videos to show you what’s happening there. We have to be very careful with the grading.

Bryan Salesky
Sure.

Yaz Shehab
Internally, on our system we have grading, the minute we start suggesting or making diagnoses, that’s another level of the FDA. Now, is it the machine that’s doing the diagnosis or is it the human being? At what point does a diagnostic, which may or may not affect your life become regulated? That’s a sticky situation for any company that’s been in the medical technology diagnostics.

Bryan Salesky
You’re not a dentist? You’re not a roboticist? You’re an entrepreneur?

Yaz Shehab
Correct.

Bryan Salesky
I love it. What advice you give to young entrepreneurs trying to do big things? It’s a tough world out there. We were just talking… You and I we were talking about how it seems with success your legal bills. Almost spit out his coffee. Sorry to do that to you. I didn’t mean to time it that way. Your legal expenses go up. I mean, it’s a litigious society out there. It costs a lot of money to start a… It really does. There’s a lot of money involved in growing a business.

Bryan Salesky
You could start a business pretty easily, but to actually grow it successfully, it takes a lot of capital. People getting started, it can be a little bit daunting, especially if you don’t have all the connections, how do we give some young people some guidance?

Yaz Shehab
I think the guidance, and I think this my personal bias. I have a one pager that I use as my qualifier for any venture, whether I invest in a venture, whether I hop on the board of directors, join them, anything. It’s just a couple of bullet points. Happy to send it to you.

Bryan Salesky
I’d love to see it.

Yaz Shehab
It starts with people. Choose ethical, whole grounded people, because at the end of the day, if you got a good team, that’s going to be great.

Bryan Salesky
Build the best team with mission driven people who are out for the best of the company and the success and want to deliver at the end of the day.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely. I think the advice is to focus on that. I think the other one is gut check. We all work with super smart people. We go into this whirlwind of metrics, prove it to me, and let’s validate it and validate it. We’ve all been there, you can validate the hell out of all the stuff. At the end of the day, if it doesn’t make sense in the gut… Just trust your gut every now and then.

Bryan Salesky
Here’s one other thing that I just find fascinating. I don’t know why this is hard but put the user first. Tech for tech sake isn’t helpful. Put the user first in everything that you do.

Yaz Shehab
I couldn’t agree more about it.

Bryan Salesky
In our case, a lot of people assume well your customer is the rider and sure that’s true, but our customer is actually the people around this autonomous vehicle. If you’re biking around the vehicle, you want to know that it sees you, it gives you room to pass and move and so on. For you. It’s not just the child. It’s their parent. It’s their family.

Yaz Shehab
That’s why I think I mentioned earlier, when people ask us, what business are you in? I say we are in a patient experience business.

Bryan Salesky
I love it.

Yaz Shehab
That’s it. It’s the patient. It’s a parent. It’s everyone. It’s that whole ecosystem, the tech, the robot, the machine learning, the AI, the blah, blah, blah. That’s beautiful technology. I am so grateful for this development, but that really shouldn’t trump ethics, and the user and the experience and building really great products that make sense. Not for the sake of, “oh, gee, great. Here’s another product that’s going to do this for me.” How many of us go and we see the pitch about a product at CES or wherever, it launches in the market and you get it and you’re like, “Wait, what do I do with this now?” I don’t subscribe to that part.

Bryan Salesky
Those are the best companies right to start with that foundation and then grow the idea from there.

Yaz Shehab
Yes. It sounds like you guys are doing the same thing, on that same track man. Absolutely awesome.

Bryan Salesky
It’s about making transportation safer, more affordable, more accessible to people. The fact that the self driving car comes from that mission enables it.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely.

Alex Roy
You guys really want to talk about this, but I want to talk about the fact that…didn’t you work on the Tron movie soundtrack back in 1981?

Yaz Shehab
I did not, but that’s close-

Alex Roy
I heard… It’s not on your Wikipedia.

Yaz Shehab
It’s not on my Wikipedia.

Bryan Salesky
Do you have Wikipedia? I don’t know.

Alex Roy
I heard the story. Is it true?

Yaz Shehab
It is not true. I did work with Wendy Carlos for about a year. I was actually at NYU. She was the woman who did the Tron sound track among other things.

Alex Roy
Bryan have you seen Tron?

Yaz Shehab
Of course I have.

Alex Roy
The original?

Yaz Shehab
Yes.

Alex Roy
In the theater?

Bryan Salesky
Yes. Come on Alex.

Alex Roy
You would have been four.

Bryan Salesky
Yes, I’ve seen it in theater. You had to go in on Yaz’s but no.

Alex Roy
You see how easily you just want to roll over this topic?

Bryan Salesky
No, I’m actually pretty… I was going to bring this up actually. This is pretty neat stuff.

Yaz Shehab
It is. I had the honor and the pleasure of working with her for about one or two semesters at NYU, on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Bryan Salesky
That’s amazing. You have a passion for music, for the arts, but also for cause oriented organizations. Tell us a little bit about that.

Yaz Shehab
Yes, absolutely. I do a lot of… Again, I am pretty picky about the startups that I get involved with. It has to have some mission driven, whether it’s in a green space, whether it’s arts, whether it’s entertainment, whatever it is, to feel that there is some value that’s been delivered. I know that’s a highly subjective term because I would argue a social network for cats has a lot of value for someone.

Bryan Salesky
I got to be honest, I’ve watched a cat video or two on YouTube.

Alex Roy
What?

Yaz Shehab
We’ve all done it.

Alex Roy
What?

Yaz Shehab
Come on Alex.

Alex Roy
Do you have cats?

Yaz Shehab
I used to have a cat.

Alex Roy
Well I have learned something during this podcast about you.

Bryan Salesky
What was it? Her name or his name?

Yaz Shehab
All right, you’re going to go there. The name was… God, I can’t believe I’m doing this. The name was Nibbles.

Bryan Salesky
Nibbles.

Yaz Shehab
Spelled N-Y-B-B-L-E-S, which is a play on words of what’s half a byte. B-Y-T-E.

Alex Roy
You picked this name?

Yaz Shehab
It’s a computer science joke.

Alex Roy
You picked the name. Your parents didn’t.

Yaz Shehab
I didn’t know, this is even funnier. I took it to the vet for the first time.

Alex Roy
It? What is your relationship with this animal?

Yaz Shehab
I took this beautiful cat to the veterinarian and she approaches Nybbles and she says, “Princess. It’s so cute. What’s her name?” I said Nybbles. She said, “I’ll stick with princess.” She completely rejected the notion that this nerdy kid would have a cat and name it Nybbles.

Bryan Salesky
How did we get on this subject? Where were we?

Alex Roy
I thought you were going to say parents said let’s put her in the robot box, give her to the medical robot.

Yaz Shehab
I thought she might die, turn into the cat police or something. Who knows?

Bryan Salesky
You were talking about how you invest in mission oriented organizations, whether it be the arts, whether it be music, technology. You were giving I think a little bit about your thesis of sure we all want to make a profitable business but they also need to do good in the world.

Yaz Shehab
Yes, look, there’s all these sectors out there about the double, triple, quadruple bottom line and thesis and all these things. The 2% and the 10%, and giving back and all that stuff. I think I really have a lot of respect for a lot of the companies that do that. I think fundamentally, where is that coming from? Is that coming from some economically driven business thesis at some level or is it some other value? Because I would argue a lot of what we do in startups, doesn’t fully translate into economic potential of that value. It’s usually the startup a decade later, or two decades later.

Bryan Salesky
You never know how these seeds are going to grow.

Yaz Shehab
Yes, right.

Bryan Salesky
That’s right. It’s impossible to forecast but you have to believe that you leave something better than where you started then it sort of grows from there.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely. Look, while I would on any day go out there and stand on the stage of TechCrunch and say Brachium is going to be the one who’s going to bring millions at this pods, to deliver primary health care in anywhere from Park Avenue to sub Saharan Africa and we’re here for the people. I would love to see that one day but it may be two or three or 10 companies later.

Bryan Salesky
The thing that people don’t know is there’s… People that work in these companies, they don’t stay there forever. Even if the company itself doesn’t deliver, you’ve trained very likely, you’ve trained the next generation of people who are up and coming go to the next company and bring that knowledge and make it happen, right?

Yaz Shehab
That’s right.

Bryan Salesky
You strike me as a super motivated person. Super driven, you can tell by staring into your eyes.

Yaz Shehab
Thank you Bryan.

Bryan Salesky
Tell me, what keeps you up in the morning? I know gets me up at night. That’s different subject.

Alex Roy
Yes, watching my Twitter.

Bryan Salesky
Exactly. Yes, precisely. Couldn’t have said it better myself. What gets you up in the morning and how do you stay motivated?

Yaz Shehab
I think this is part of again, philosophy and ideology and little tips to other entrepreneurs. Look, at the end of the day you don’t want to be a parody of yourself on Silicon Valley, the HBO show, the first episode is like, “We’re here to save the world. We’re here to save the world.” It’s like look, man, we’re just building some value in the big grand cosmic scheme of things.

Yaz Shehab
Personally, for me, I get up in the morning. I have my regular meditation practice and after the meditation practices, it’s like okay, how can I serve today? What am I supposed to do to just add little value in the domain that I’m doing? That really is what drives me. The notion of service. As long as I feel I’m doing service for some cause, I’m good. Sometimes that cause it’s a huge successful venture that makes millions of dollars and sometimes it doesn’t.

Bryan Salesky
What’s a venture that just completely didn’t work out?

Yaz Shehab
God.

Bryan Salesky
Can I ask that?

Yaz Shehab
Yes, I think that was my third or fourth startup that…media delivery, consumer electronics.

Bryan Salesky
We can learn oftentimes more from our failures than our success.

Yaz Shehab
It’s really true. I think we bottomed out in 2008 or 2009. With the whole economic meltdown, we couldn’t get the next round of funding.

Bryan Salesky
Some of this was just timing.

Alex Roy
Were you competing with Sling?

Yaz Shehab
We were competing with Apple TV and Sonos combined at the time, and that hit me pretty hard. It hit me hard and I think it was the best thing that happened to me. I got up in the beginning on 1-1-2009. I shaved my head. I took off…

Bryan Salesky
You had to.

Yaz Shehab
I took off for about six to nine months. Traveled the world, meditated, got into some Zen mode to say, as a startup entrepreneur, if you’re going to attach yourself and self-worth to outcomes that’s a big hole.

Bryan Salesky
Taking time off is a respectable thing to do, but you’re persistent.

Yaz Shehab
You’ve got to be persistent and resilient. You just got to do it man.

Alex Roy
Bryan, when you going to start taking some time off?

Bryan Salesky
I’m actually taking some time off around Labor Day.

Alex Roy
All right. Good.

Bryan Salesky
Does that make me less human?

Alex Roy
No, I’m glad. You should.

Bryan Salesky
You’re really into music?

Yaz Shehab
I am.

Bryan Salesky
What’s your favorite kind of music?

Yaz Shehab
Oh my gosh, never ask a music guy favorite kind of music. That’s like asking-

Bryan Salesky
I’m a dumb roboticist. I can ask anything.

Yaz Shehab
You are far from a dumb roboticist.

Alex Roy
What don’t you like, how about that?

Yaz Shehab
I spent years studying music. I got a couple of degrees in music and media and technology and all the stuff. I’m all over in that.

Bryan Salesky
So you like all kinds of music. I’m going to reframe the question. What form of music would we be hearing if it was Friday evening after a long week and you just cranking it up? What is that?

Yaz Shehab
Oh my gosh, jazz? Absolutely jazz.

Bryan Salesky
There you go.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely. Friday evening.

Bryan Salesky
I love jazz.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely, and some eclectic jazz probably.

Bryan Salesky
What does that mean? What is that?

Yaz Shehab
I knew you were going to ask me that question.

Alex Roy
I thought you were going to ask what music is playing during the teeth cleaning.

Bryan Salesky
It’s actually a good question.

Alex Roy
I’m going to have to defer.

Bryan Salesky
Just give him the same answer you did before. So yes, we’ve considered that. There’s a very little known, maybe becomes better known after saying this, but there’s a little known thing at the University of Pittsburgh. A weekly jazz seminar that happens in the last week of October leading into November. Jazz masters from all over the world come and teach students for a week, and then they get on stage and they just jam.

Bryan Salesky
There’s hardly a plan. You could tell he rehearsed a little bit. Just the improvisation, the brilliance that unfolds on that stage. It’s at Carnegie Music Hall, not that one in Pittsburgh. The tickets 12 bucks. I’ve gone almost every year since I was in college. It’s the most therapeutic evening of my year. There’s something about it that just… Everything goes away. You see these people who are masters in their profession. They’re masters at what they do.

Bryan Salesky
They’re so good that they’re not thinking about what’s happening on stage. They’re feeling it and it just comes through the instrument. The most beautiful thing I witnessed I think every [inaudible 005814].

Yaz Shehab
Conduits, they play through the industry.

Bryan Salesky
They do, and they’re connected to each other and there’s this magical thing that happens. The one year they had two drummers. They had a couple of bass guitars up there, and you’re like, how is this going to work? How did they just find their lane? Then they go from one thing to the next. Most beautiful thing ever. Have you been to gigs like that? Where do I find something like that here in San Francisco?

Yaz Shehab
Oh my gosh. Where do you find something like that? I think the church you can find that in, in the SF jazz center.

Alex Roy
What’s the church? Not literally a church.

Yaz Shehab
No, it’s a bar here.

Bryan Salesky
There we go. This is where I mean you just see some truly the masters and they just start jamming it out.

Yaz Shehab
Absolutely.

Bryan Salesky
It’s a beautiful thing.

Yaz Shehab
Actually, that reminds me, you guys know the Mattson Two? The Mattson brothers drums and guitar? They’re just this duo. They’re the twin brothers and they do this really eclectic jazz off that and I saw them recently at the SF jazz center and they absolutely procreate what you’re talking about. In this trance. You’re like holy cow.

Bryan Salesky
Yes. They’re just connected. It’s just most beautiful thing in the world.

Alex Roy
Well, I hate to drag us back to business.

Bryan Salesky
Come on, I’m having fun.

Alex Roy
But is not… If music plays during the teeth cleaning right?

Yaz Shehab
We do have an audio video experience actually. Correct.

Alex Roy
Clearly music is selected that is calming to optimize for a good outcome? Right?

Yaz Shehab
What kind of music would you like to have when you’re…

Alex Roy
Why is there music in elevators? Why is there music in the background of a doctor’s office, they usually put on the radio, but obviously you want to have music that is calming. A light Blue is often on the wall.

Yaz Shehab
We have to be careful because we go into cultural contexts. Some of the images that we were displaying, we have actually a heads up display that we use, and you sit behind it, and it has all this amazing stuff. Some of our UX folks commented, some of these images will be offensive in Indonesia.

Alex Roy
Context matters.

Bryan Salesky
Culture matter, context matters.

Yaz Shehab
Music and context, yes.

Alex Roy
Connecting music and culture and context. There’s software out there today. We do a whole episode about this topic. There’s software out there that will automatically generate melodies, whole songs.

Yaz Shehab
Correct.

Alex Roy
There’s this, is it a Swedish music producer? I forget what-

Bryan Salesky
I think they’re all Swedish.

Alex Roy
Okay. The guy who writes, he writes or generates via AI. He has a piece of software that generates all these hits with the spine and structure of hit songs. Are you going to deploy something like that culturally based on where your patience is, that’ll generate a pleasant music for your patients?

Yaz Shehab
Yes. Thank you for the tip, because… Do I have to give you credit? Well I give to Alex.

Alex Roy
Give it to Bryan, because if Bryan hadn’t gone down this road, I wouldn’t even be asking the question.

Yaz Shehab
We did that. Again, my background used to be… it is computer music and human machine interfaces and that whole world. Way back in the day, we developed this patented technology called interactive sound design that does exactly that. Create sound tracks on the fly, context related for video games. Maybe I’ll take that up and deploy the system.

Alex Roy
I’m hoping that if you’ll say there will always be a place, they’ll always be demand for what Brian is describing, the visceral cathartic value of a human performer in real space.

Yaz Shehab
So important. I sure hope so.

Alex Roy
Will anyone… Can you replace a human jazz performance. Multiple people jamming out with holograms of Miles Davis or anyone?

Yaz Shehab
True story, about a million years ago. Well it seems like a million years ago, I sat late one night in Nice France at this castle with a Saudi sheikh. Yes, it gets good.

Alex Roy
Alex has his own story with this.

Yaz Shehab
We were debating into the night about can a machine be sentient, or creative and can it create music on par or Eclipse a human which takes us into this whole thing?

Bryan Salesky
What did you guys come up with?

Yaz Shehab
My point was yes, at a certain point it can especially as evidence now. His point was, he can never really replace that high touch of a creator like an artist. A painter, anything is going to be a made up fake replica of what is that?

Bryan Salesky
That’s what I think too is that sure we’ll build AI’s that will somehow replicate and learn what people like and create variations at some level but is it truly creating something totally novel not seen before.

Yaz Shehab
It’s the point again, technology for technology’s sake. I do believe what you guys are doing is A, not a nice to have, it’s a must have. There is a place for that in our society. Now we could argue algorithms that create music or videos or films for that matter are this nice to have or must have, or do we even deploy the resources to develop them? I don’t know. I’m far from making that. I want to ride in your cars.

Bryan Salesky
You have an open invitation anytime, Yaz.

Yaz Shehab
Thanks, brother. Appreciate that.

Alex Roy
Bryan, a lot of people I know ask you what it would take for you to trust an autonomous vehicle? The answer is generally well, my mother would get it. Alex would take his baby in it. Do you feel that you are comfortable now with a robot doing your dental work?

Bryan Salesky
Well, I got to tell you, I think I need to still know just a little more. Maybe I need to do a check up on some of the safety engineering. Maybe we need to get Dr. Phil come in to do it.

Alex Roy
That’s a great idea.

Bryan Salesky
My interest is piqued, I think I’m at the point where I want learn more, but I think I’d be willing to try it.

Alex Roy
When you say pique, that’s P-I-Q-U-E, not P-E-A-K-E-D. Because there are people for whom it would be the second spelling who will never go back. I would give it a shot. I would. I know it sounds crazy, but I feel like the people who put money into this like to see it work and they wouldn’t put it out there if it wasn’t good. I hope.

Bryan Salesky
It sounds like he has some pretty neat technology that essentially a very sophisticated power washer for your teeth.

Alex Roy
If it looks like Eva from Wall E, I will give it a shot. If it looks like Wall E from Wall E, there’s no way that thing is going in my mouth. That’s why industrial design really matters. Whether it’s autonomous vehicle or a dental robot. All right. If you would like to learn more about Brachium, that’s B-R-A-C-H-I-U-M .com and if you’d like to learn more about our podcast, we are www.noparkingpodcast.com. Bryan still not on social media, but the podcast is. It’s No Parking Pod on Twitter. I’m Alex Roy 144 on all platforms. If you would like to be on our show, or recommend someone or topic, please contact us at guests@noparking podcast.com. See you next week.