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CEOCFO Magazine, PO Box 340
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Lynn Fosse, Senior Editor
Steve Alexander, Associate Editor
Bud Wayne, Editorial Executive
Christy Rivers -
Dr. Kamran Ghaffari
Founder & CEO
Interview conducted by:
Lynn Fosse, Senior Editor, CEOCFO Magazine
Published – January 13, 2020
CEOCFO: Dr. Ghaffari, what was the vision when you started Touché Technologies and what is the focus today?
Dr. Ghaffari: The vision was to be the main provider of high-
Since the early 1970s and 1980s, the market has been demanding for better computer graphics and physics engines. Later on, improved audio feedback added more realism to the simulators. In the recent years, the simulation technology has reached a convincing level of realism when it comes to computer graphics and dynamic simulation. A realistic sense of touch, however, is still missing.
We believe that the market demand for force and motion feedback robotics will increasingly grow. Therefore, we started developing our robotic solutions back in 2013. Our robotic products can emulate sense of touch and various haptics and motion feedback with high accuracy. They can be integrated with different simulations and add the extra extension of force and motion feedback to the simulation.
CEOCFO: Would you give us a couple of examples of how that works?
Dr. Ghaffari: Let’s consider a surgical simulator for training surgeons. In this example, the trainee can use a FF robotic arm to transfer his hand motion to the simulator. At the same time, robotic device can apply forces back to the hand of the user based on his interaction with the simulated virtual environment. For instance, the user can control the motion of the surgical tools that are simulated in the computer. The moment that these virtual tools make contact with any other virtual object in the simulation, the robot will generate forces that accurately match the contact characteristics and geometries of the touching objects. This gives the impression to the trainee that he/she is manipulating a physical object in real world as opposed to a virtual world in a computer simulation.
CEOCFO: Where else would this technology be applicable?
Dr. Ghaffari: This technology has a wide range of applications from military and medical, to various industrial simulations, games, and entertainment. For instance, learning how to drive heavy military vehicles can be dangerous, expensive, and time-
For vehicle simulators, we provide motion actuators that can accurately move the simulator cockpit according to the motion of the simulated vehicle. This way the trainee feels to be in an actual vehicle while driving the simulated vehicle. We also have a force-
CEOCFO: In laymen’s terms, how are you able to make this happen? What is the technology behind what you are doing?
Dr. Ghaffari: The principle of operation behind this technology is quite simple. The robot transfers the motion of the user to the computer simulation. The simulation calculates interaction forces acting on the virtual object manipulated by the user. The robot then replicates the calculated forces by the simulation to emulate sense of touch.
The technology behind each step, however, can be quite complicated. For example, to calculate the interaction forces, the simulation needs to take into account the dynamics, geometries, materials, and relative positions of the objects, and then efficiently process all that information in real-
In order to develop a realistic force-
CEOCFO: Is everyone’s sense of touch or sense of feeling the vibration the same?
Dr. Ghaffari: It is hard to say if every person would perceive forces similarly. That’s probably quite subjective. However, what matters is that everyone evaluates the forces emulated by our robots based on their own past experiences in real-
CEOCFO: What is the market like? Are many companies working in the same arena?
Dr. Ghaffari: There are a growing number of companies working in the field of force-
CEOCFO: How do you reach out? Do people understand the difference in quality?
Dr. Ghaffari: Sense of touch is a personal experience and the best way to show the difference in quality is through demos. That is why we regularly participate in different exhibitions to let the visitors try our products and see the difference in quality. Another way to reach out is to run advertisements on relevant platforms. We also benefit from client referrals through word of mouth. We do our best to keep our clients happy with our work and that increases the likelihood that they refer us to another partner of theirs. This is how we have been reaching out so far.
CEOCFO: How is business?
Dr. Ghaffari: It is going exactly as planned! I am quite pleased with that fact.
CEOCFO: How do you stand out at a conference with so many companies and so many ideas competing for attention?
Dr. Ghaffari: In an exhibition, we try to stand out mainly by focusing on the quality of our hardware and customer service. We also review our innovative solutions to our visitors; solutions that really matter to some clients.
In general, we constantly try to find ways to improve our robotic devices and their software interfaces, so that the clients can easily integrate them with their products and achieve optimum results. So, the technical specifications of our devices generally stand out compared to other solutions.
CEOCFO: Would you give us an example of the customer service? How is it over and above what people normally receive?
Dr. Ghaffari: We understand that integrating an off-
At the same time, we are very focused on quality. We care if the client is truly exploiting the performance of our devices. We are not satisfied with any force-
CEOCFO: Would a client typically buy several of your products or might there just be one or two potentially for each client? How does it work with the range of what you offer?
Dr. Ghaffari: That really depends. For example, new clients usually do not commit themselves to a high-
CEOCFO: Are you seeking funding, investment or partnerships as you grow and move forward?
Dr. Ghaffari: Yes, we do. So far, the company has been self-
CEOCFO: What is your geographic reach today?
Dr. Ghaffari: The type of applications that would benefit from our devices are mostly developed in North America and Western Europe. However, there are also potential clients in South America and sometimes in Africa or East Asia that we try to reach out. For now, most of the demand has been within North America and Europe.
CEOCFO: Are there some industries that are not paying as much attention as they should? Where do you see the most attention and where do you see the areas that are not recognizing Touché Technologies yet?
Dr. Ghaffari: That is a good question. Not every segment of the market is at the same stage when it comes to force-
The industries that have not been paying enough attention to force-
There are also other growing markets that can create new applications for force-
CEOCFO: On all levels, why pay attention to Touché Technologies? What sets the company apart?
Dr. Ghaffari: Touché Technologies is committed to deliver the highest quality products and services in the force-
“Touché Technologies is committed to deliver the highest quality products and services in the force-