On the top level of the Atlanta Tech Village parking lot in early March, a crowd gathered to watch a lawnmower move.
Normally a person drives this lawn mower but today the eXmark Vantage S had no one riding on it. Greenzie CEO, Charles Brian Quinn (CBQ), had just given a brief overview on what made this eXmark unique and autonomous to the crowd of 40 folks. A flip of the switch and a simple button from his computer and the eXmark was moving.
The first 10 seconds were unremarkable — almost as if it was being ghost-ridden in a straight line. As it neared the edges of the parking lot, the 500 lb lawnmower stopped on a dime, spun around 180 degrees, and started forward again in the opposite direction to the crowd’s amazement.
Greenzie’s team had pulled off their first successful Demo Day and stamped a major milestone: building a working prototype.
In V1 of Greenzie’s product, CBQ and team set out to prove how software can control a mower. Through encoder data and close loop control, the software can autonomously show what is possible of the mower for landscape maintenance professionals. Another important feature demonstrated was the “The Z Stop” or the remote control emergency stop button. Lastly, Greenzie’s team showed the future of path planning through GPS coordinates which will be in the next version.
Greenzie started out of the Atlanta Ventures Studio with the vision to take a software-focused approach to lawn maintenance and mowers. This ranges from a Roomba for your lawn (which exists) to high end, Big Ag (corporate farming). CBQ and his team made the strategic decision to focus in the middle on an ignored commercial lawn maintenance market.
Below is a video of the eXmark mower Greenzie-fied.
CBQ and the team are building something special.