Hanson Robotics’ Spotlight Series
This is the first of a series of interview posts introducing our amazing Hanson Robotics’ team members to the rest of the world. You know us through our social and research robots — Sophia, Han, Little Sophia, Zeno, Professor Einstein, BINA48 and the list goes on. But the talented people behind the scenes are the ones who make the Hanson Robotics’ magic happen, day in and day out. It’s a very special group of people from around the world, all contributing through their own unique expertise and aligning behind the mission of “bringing our robots to life!”
Introducing Jessica Freeney, Human Robotics Simulation Animator, Hong Kong
Jessica is an avid fan of nectarines, likes short queues and once received a Magic 8 Ball from her financial planner. Her list of achievements includes owning an actual pair of cat’s pajamas and getting an eight letter word on Countdown (the word was “sandwich,” which she also enjoys). Born in Ireland she now resides in Hong Kong where she collects mosquito bites and perishable goods. She is a Hong Kong-based illustrator, animator, fashion designer and alumni of the Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art Design & Technology. Passionate for artistic challenges, seeking out creative pursuits in art, animation and fashion design, forever interested in the stories we share with the world and the characters we portray.
Hanson: What was the moment you knew you’d made the right decision to work here?
JF: When I received my first paycheck! Well, that was definitely nice but in all seriousness, I feel like there wasn’t one outstanding moment when I felt I’d made the right decision. But I was immediately struck by the atmosphere here at Hanson–and that made such a positive impression on me. From the moment I walked through the door, I felt very welcomed.
All my coworkers are wonderfully friendly people with very interesting backstories. It really feels like we’re all on the same team, and nobody hesitates to help each other out whenever needed. Not to mention how interesting and varied the work is! I’ve learned more in the past few months working here than I have in the last few years, which I find really fulfilling. I get to tap into several of my hobbies on an everyday basis and honestly, who could ask for more?
Hanson: What was your best day at work?
JF: It’s very hard to single out a specific best day here. It might sound cliche, but every day here is fun. It’s often challenging and sometimes stressful but it’s also creatively fulfilling and exciting too. Difficult challenges are much easier to manage when you can enjoy the process of solving them and are excited about the results. And that’s what I get to experience working here.
Hanson: What’s something that happened that can only happen here?
JF: I got slapped by a robot once! Here’s a tip: Don’t complain about your hairdryer around a sentient machine. I learned that the hard way!
Hanson: What are you most proud of?
JF: Getting to see my work come to life through Sophia. I never could have imagined as a kid drawing with crayons that one day I’d be able to express my creativity in a way that helps bring life to a robot. It’s crazy to think that what essentially started out as wires and bolts, yet through everyone’s hard work has become Sophia. I sometimes forget she’s not human. It’s like I’m in a science fiction novel.
Cyndy Sandor, Corporate Marketing Director, Hanson Robotics Limited
Photo and Video Credits: Hanson Robotics Limited