Still a few years ago I would have never thought that one day I could set a foot on the Russian ground. When the staff of the Geek Picnic invited us to come to Moscow, my wife and I said: “sure why not”, but somehow it still seemed like something that wouldn’t happen.

Slowly days of the event approached and the staff was organizing the trip seriously, hotel reservations, flight tickets, pass for the entrance. But on our side we still had to do a lot, get the visas, prepare the robot to make sure it would work correctly. Most important, and we found that out only two days before our departure, we had to get a form for to declare all parts we were going to make go through the customs.

If you are used with this kind of forms you might think it’s easy, but for us it almost became a nightmare. To the point we almost decided not to go.

Imagine, you need to get a form somewhere in France, not in Paris, within two days. To fill that form, you need to list, number, price without VAT, weight, and where the part was made for each component of everything you are going to take with you. Plus, each of these components need to have a picture that will be in reference to the listing above.  Once done, make 13 copies of that form, send it by email to the CCI, and you get a mail in return that says, you forget to write this there and that here, the number of this doesn’t correspond to the global of that and so on…

Corrections for about two hours, you think you got it right, that finally you are finished,  you send back the form to the CCI. An email comes back asking: Where is the form translated in Russian? Don’t think you can use Google translator because for exemple “speaker” in french becomes “pregnant “. Thanks to Alexander, a Russian InMoov builder, we got the translation done very quickly.

One full day of f… stress!!

The very next day with our suitcases and all our papers in hand we headed for the Airport. Guess what, Air France refused us on board of the plane because of the batteries needed to power up the robot. We had to reorganize the trip and fast, luckily I got on the phone, in Russia, Nattaly the staff organizer, she said they would take care of the extra costs. In the same time I sent a message to Alexander, the InMoov builder in Russia, to find out if he could buy some batteries for me. InMoov without batteries, is useless.

This time we got on the plane, without our batteries, and flew to Moscow.

From then on, everything went smoothly.

The Geek Picnic was organized in a huge space. The 57th Pavillion at Russia exhibition center. The building, beautifully surrounded with large bays of windows allowed the saturday morning sunlight to en-light the biggest technologies and robotics event of Russia.


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We almost immediatly meet Nattaly, and also Alexander and his assistant. They had brought their InMoov clone which was completely printed but not yet fully wired. I have to mention that I took Alexander by surprise, a few days before our departure, when I invited him to the event, and he didn’t have the time to work on his robot.photo3

Alexander in black clothes, his assistant in the middle and their InMoov clone.

I like the idea to invite a InMoov builder with his clone/replicant in each country we go. I think it goes well with the spirit I’m trying to carry through InMoov

30 000 people came to the event during those two days. It was a huge succes.

Lots of medias,

The Russian Channel 1 TV made a very large interview and also requested a special interview in myworkshop in Paris, once returned home.
There is a bunch of little sequences but the main are at 1:38 and 4:42.
I don’t know what they say but the whole video seems interesting though.

Nicolas of Bionico was there also, with his InMoov prosthetic hand, and this time, the prosthetic was working well. They seemed to have problems in the morning to get good results with the Advancer Technologies sensors, but in the afternoon it was just amazing how well it worked. One thing I suggested is humidity caused by sweat in the sleeve socket, where the sensors are. I suggested that we maybe need to humidify or use a gel to help to get better results from the sensors. And on Sunday it is what they did. The results were there immediately. This is good to know.

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I found this video where you can see Alexander and his robot and also Nicolas with his InMoov prosthetic hand.

Of course we went to visit Moscow for only a day because I had to return to Paris for work.

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