Santa Cruz Tech Beat


Five in Five (times three!): Josh Metz of Monterey Bay DART

Sarah Vickers-Webb of Santa Cruz Tech beat interviewing Josh Metz of Montery DART

Sarah Vickers-Webb
Production & Editorial Assistant
Santa Cruz Tech Beat

May 8, 2020 — Marina, CA

Nonprofit’s October event to focus on DART technologies and COVID-19 recovery

This week’s Five in Five interview transformed into a Five in Fifteen as we checked in with Josh Metz of Monterey Bay Drone Automation & Robotics (DART) to see how he and DART were adjusting to life during the pandemic.

Josh is the co-founder of Monterey Bay DART and an Executive Officer at Fort Ord Reuse Authority. Along with Chris Bley, Josh founded DART in 2018 to create a world-class drone, automation/autonomy, robotics technology development, testing and manufacturing cluster in the Monterey Bay region.

While the coronavirus pandemic has pushed the annual DART symposium online, the nonprofit is working on a shorter segment for June 25, 2020, with more to come in the fall, during the week of October 19, 2020. The June event will consist of real time discussion with DART Board members and pre-recorded material featuring the different entities, experts, entrepreneurs associated or engaged with DART.

“The plan is to build a more significant program for the Fall, and that will be the week of October 19,” said Josh. “It will be a four or five day program that will focus on the DART technologies and COVID adjustment or COVID recovery. With all the changes, we decided to give it a little more time to mature and try to set up a program that going to help set a path forward to recovery that is going to be so critical.”

In the age of social distancing, drones, robotics and automated tech can help people safely conduct necessary operations, according to Josh.

“As a remote operated technology, drones have some potential benefits for meeting needs that are now emerging from people being limited in how they can get together, so I think that will probably be a factor, whether its delivery approaches, monitoring, disaster response, things like that,” he said.

Josh also sees potential in the agtech industry. “They’ll have continuing need for manual operations in the field and the need to keep the farm workers safe and separated means there could be some reduced capacity there, so robotics and machines could support the continued supply of food at efficient prices, it’s critical stuff.”

Upcoming DART Events:


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