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A ‘Quick’ Startup: Alumni Couple Seeks to Start New Internet Revolution

June 17, 2015

Chris Quick Articleimage

Passing Along Advice: Chris Quick, chief executive officer of RealBotics, returned to campus this spring to provide students with valuable insight on lessons learned about launching a new business. (Photo by Dale Long)

Did you remember to unplug the iron or turn off the coffee maker before you left the house today?

The day is coming when you won’t have to drive back home to check or worry all day about what you’re going to find when you get home tonight. Instead, a home-based robot could give you peace of mind on the situation.

That’s just one of the possible uses for RealBotics, a new Internet-based business under development by alumni couple Chris and Kristin Quick. The site will allow users to remotely control robots or other devices from anywhere they have Internet accessibility.

RealBotics will change the way people think about the Internet, says Chris. Connecting a device to www.RealBotics.com for the non-exclusive control of devices will be free; exclusive control will be available for a fee.

The Quicks are putting the final touches on the site, getting it ready to accept users from throughout the world. The possibilities for the site are virtually unlimited. “If you can dream it, you can build it. Whether you build it or not, control it with RealBotics,” states a catchphrase from the company’s website.

“I’ve always known I wanted to be an entrepreneur,” says Chris, a first-generation college student who has loved robots since childhood. Those interests were encouraged by involvement in Dean Kamen’s FIRST Robotics program in his hometown of Overland Park, Kansas. He earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, with minors in three other subjects, from Rose-Hulman in 2008, and added a master’s degree in engineering management the following year.

Chris returned to campus this spring to offer advice to students interested in following in his footsteps by becoming entrepreneurs. An enterprise should mesh well with your passions, he says. That’s because there will be difficult times, and you will need to love your work to carry you through.

“A lot of startups fail because people don’t have that passion to keep going,” Chris says.

The Quicks certainly have a passion for RealBotics, which they hope to launch as a self-funded startup this summer. A short video explanation of the company’s concept is already available at www.RealBotics.com,along with a page to register new members.

The ability to quickly and easily explain your startup is critical to its success, Chris told the Rose-Hulman students. The company’s name should be easy to spell and say, and he advised students to be ready to work hard, but avoid neglecting friends and family. “You need both sides,” he says.

Kristin, a 2009 biomedical engineering alumna from Chicago, is now finishing a doctoral degree in neural engineering at the University of Pittsburgh. She is specializing in work which could someday combat paralysis.

Chris urged the budding entrepreneurs to make the most of their Rose-Hulman friendships, noting that they may never be around a group of such talented people again in their lives.

“Rose-Hulman is an amazing resource,” he says. “There is value in every relationship you can pick up here. You will be surprised where they take you.”