Avaak Technology Lets Users Create Their Own Personal Video Networks
When San Diego-based Avaak made its debut earlier this month at the spring DEMO conference in Palm Desert, CA, chief executive Gioia Messinger offered a grand description of the company’s personal video technology.”It’s like your own personal Google Street View, except it’s live, expandable, sharable, and easy—very, very easy,” Messinger told the Demo audience.
The technology enables users to easily set up a wireless Internet gateway and two small video cameras for $300, providing real-time video of anything from a family gathering to a company warehouse that can be viewed online via a personal “VueZone” account. In the same way that YouTube became ubiquitous and Google Earth forever changed the way people view the planet, Messinger said in a company statement, “We believe the Vue personal video network will transform the way consumers use remote video viewing.”
Since Avaak plans to begin selling the technology in the next few months, I met recently with Messinger and marketing vice-president Dan Gilbert to hear the Avaak story.
Messinger told me the idea for Avaak’s technology was hatched about five years ago, when the Pentagon was searching for inexpensive sensors that U.S. troops could leave behind when they must evacuate an area after securing it. In particular, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency was looking to expand on wireless networking technology developed by a UC Berkeley computer science team headed by Kris Pister. The Berkeley team created wireless networks consisting of millimeter-sized sensors that were so small and so inexpensive that Pister coined the term “smart dust” to describe them. (Avaak itself is the Hebrew word for dust.) Such technology could be used by the military to track enemy movements, or to detect poisonous gas or radioactivity. Since then, Pister has founded his own startup, Dust Networks, a Hayward, CA-based company commercializing … Next Page »