The grand-daddy of Maker Faires, the Bay Area mega-event in San Mateo, California celebrated its 10th anniversary this year.
Amongst the many cool meet-ups (one with a touch less gravity) was a catch-up with Petcube founder and CTO Alex Neskin.
Alex: This is the Petcube. We made it to let you the pet owner just stay connected with your pets. It is a surveillance camera, it's a pet camera. You have a speaker and a microphone inside so you can talk to your pet but the magical thing here is you can actually interact with it remotely because we have a laser pointer inside. You can see the video stream from the camera and you can move the position, move your finger and change the position of the laser dots on the screen.
You move your finger on your phone, like on an app?
Alex: Yeah. You just see the video stream on your phone and you swipe your finger and you can change the position of the physical laser, so it is very cool.
Is it already available?
Alex: Yeah we already shipped more than 8,000 units, we're selling it on our website, on Amazon. You can download our free application, actually, and you can try it because we placed a bunch of Petcubes in pet shelters, so you can play with public cats or dogs, keep them entertained or even adopt one of them.
Very cool. Do you live here in San Francisco?
Alex: We're based right now in San Francisco actually. Originally we are from Ukraine and we have manufacturing in China.
What made you decide to do this?
Alex: It's just a nice story, my neighbors threatened to call the cops on me because my dog was so loud. He barked a lot so I needed to make something and just ... I bought some cheap web camera, a tripod mount for the camera and built a prototype to keep my dog entertained. It was fun, we kept him entertained and my neighbors were certainly satisfied about it.
And then someone said you should make a product out of this?
Alex: Yeah, actually my friend said, "Oh my God, we're leaving the Skype turned on to see what's happening with our dogs or cats." We should sell this.
And thus the Petcube. Check out more at their site - https://petcube.com/