Where are they now?



Argo’s new lidar sensor could help deploy self-driving vehicles by 2022

Starting next year, autonomous vehicles could pass you on the highway thanks to Argo AI’s new long-range lidar sensor. The self-driving technology company – backed by auto powerhouses Ford and Volkswagen – unveiled its own lidar sensor that can accurately spot and identify objects more than 1,300 feet away. 

Lidar, an acronym for “’light detection and ranging,” is the 3D environment mapper often used in autonomous vehicles to navigate in real-time. The sensor provides super-precise depth perception so AVs can recognize objects at long distances. 

The Argo Lidar is a standout though thanks to a technology called Geiger-mode, which Argo AI acquired in 2017 via its acquisition of lidar technology company Princeton Lightwave. Not only can Geiger-mode see about 300 feet further than current lidar sensors, but it also has the ability to detect “dark and distant objects with low reflectivity” which is vital for highway driving. Testing has already begun in six U.S. cities with more locations on the way, including a spot in Europe. 

“When we first started, I knew that the market did not have an adequate long-range lidar,” says Argo CEO and co-founder Bryan Salesky. “We decided to make an acquisition focused on plugging the hole for that long-range need. It has really been a game-changer for our self-driving system and has enabled us to be able to move really fast, to the point now where we’re starting to equip cars with the sensor, and it’s opening up testing in urban and highway environments.” 

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What have these four business icons been up to over the past year?

It’s been nearly one year since we launched Pittsburgh Region. Next is Now. As we inch closer to the brand’s one-year mark, what better time to check in on the four icons who were featured in our launch video – Leah Lizarondo, CEO & Co-Founder, 412 Food Rescue; Luis von Ahn, CEO & Co-Founder, Duolingo; John Thornton, CEO, Astrobotic and; Nisha Blackwell, CEO & Founder, Knotzland Bowtie Co. 

These icons have – like all of us – experienced the highs and lows of the past year. But they did not let the pandemic stop them. These business leaders pushed forward, continued to innovate and took their organizations to new heights. 

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Nothing compares to Pittsburgh. There’s great support and an overflow of talent here.

Ingrid Cook, Founder and CEO, SHzoom

Checking in with four icons + the scoop on Argo AI’s latest innovation