A place where you can contribute to customers by getting immersed in your interests

We interviewed Shin, who manages robot control, Mujin’s core technology, as a robotics engineer.

ーーWhat kind of job is a “robotics engineer”?

Mujin makes software that enables industrial robots to move. We plan robots’ movements and design robot control.  

ーー What project is memorable to you?

One of my most memorable projects is the automation of unloading boxes at PALTAC’s logistics center.
In the field of robotics, even if something theoretically goes well, in many cases it fails in reality because it doesn’t just end with software, involving hardware. At the scene, a gap of only several millimeters resulted in failure to recognize boxes and collision. We found out new facts through several thousand times of testing at the scene.
Furthermore, we had to achieve success rates higher than 99.9% in order to obtain permission for practical use.

As a result, we worked at the scene for almost a month. I felt a huge sense of fulfillment when the operation began successfully and was impressed when watching the huge 4 robots move with my code.

ーー It seems like you need a lot of perseverance. What is the key to your success?

The passion to put new technology out into the world.
As long as you have that, all there’s left to do is to fix the problems one by one.
“Motion planning”, Mujin’s core technology, existed theoretically in the past, but no one was able to put it into practical use. Establisher and CTO Rosen, who had passion and continued to work, believing in success, was able to practicalize it.

ーー How was your life as a student?

I liked things that moved, like planes and cars, and majored in mechanical engineering. I also liked software and was immersed in developing open source. I feel that my current job is its destination.
I felt happy when I got positive feedback and helped others. I almost want to do open source development even now, but since there are many similar cases at work it feels the same.

At graduate school, I liked both mechanics and software. While others focused on the logic of mechanics, I was also interested in coding, so I did both.

ーー After you graduated, what did you do?

I applied to only one company, a research laboratory of a major company because I was interested in their project. I was thinking of proceeding to the doctoral program if I didn’t pass the selection, but luckily I was hired.
Being able to work for a long span of time, with sufficient funding, it was a very favorable environment for me because I wanted to focus on research.

ーー How did you meet Mujin?

Because my friend worked at Mujin, I visited its office one day. I was satisfied with my work and had no intention of changing jobs.
However, when I stepped inside the office, I was suddenly interested in how everyone was active and immersed in their jobs.
When talking to CTO Rosen and other engineers, I felt that they were truly trying to fix problems, for example “solving the declining birthrate and aging population with robots”, with a realistic vision.
My interest continued to grow, and I decided to apply. For two whole days, while actually coding, I was questioned on how I thought and why I did these actions. I felt as if I were being stripped naked, and began to think about how interesting Mujin was and that I wanted to challenge myself here.

ーー What kind of company is Mujin?

I think Mujin is a gathering of people who like change and weird things. Everyone jumped out of major companies to join this unique one, so basically everyone is a “weirdo” in a good way.
Because we are trying new things, circumstances keep on changing. We can decide on something by talking with the CTO for 5 minutes, whereas in large companies the same thing would take several weeks. I think people who find this interesting and can enjoy it suits Mujin well.
Of course, there are many obstacles, but when looking back, I feel that everything was fun.
This company is a place where you can pursue things with curiosity, and it leads to customers. I feel that it’s the perfect place for me. This position, where you can make users happy by getting immersed in your work, is truly blessed.

Thank you, Shin!

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