HMC INQ is the Santa Monica-based incubator for Harvey Mudd startups led by Josh Jones ’98 and Gary Evans, Ruth and Harvey Berry Professor of Entrepreneurial Leadership. The first class of entrepreneurs received $120,000 in seed money, office space, mentorship, legal and cloud services credit, and peer support.
Five companies participated in the 10-week program, which began during late summer 2017. Participants lived together at a home in Santa Monica, California, while they developed their companies. In early November, the startup founders presented their projects during three Demo Days, one held on campus.
Paige Pruitt ’11 and Sean Spielberg
ZephVR automatically adds wind to any virtual reality (VR) game, using machine learning to recognize events in games’ audio tracks, activating fans at the correct moment. The software used by ZephVR is adaptable to all games, creating a platform that adds haptic feedback to any VR experience automatically.
“Wind is just our Trojan horse. We are making software for every haptic device out there.”
Cherie Ho ’17, Vai Viswanathan ’17 and Chris Clark Chris Clark, professor of engineering and associate department chair
Solving the next step of the robotics revolution: coordinating multiple robots by building the platform to route multi-robot systems.
“With our software, robots can communicate, split up tasks and avoid getting in each other’s way.”
Sergey Tsalkov ’09
A game server host that manages multiplayer games from one central server, featuring custom control panels for specific games.
“I hosted a multiplayer game server for my friends and me on my computer, and they got annoyed because they couldn’t log in while I was asleep. I rented some data-center space, but that was expensive, so I thought I’d spread the cost out by hosting servers for other people.”
Hao Cao ’17 and Michael Muzio ’17
The BumbleBeast is an all-in-one desktop machine for professional-level manufacturing.
“The solution for rapid prototyping—a desktop 3-D printer with CNC milling, laser engraving and injection molding—Bumblebeast will expand the capability of printers while maintaining the ease of use. BumbleBeast was born of frustration at using the tools in the Harvey Mudd College machine shop—we just wanted one machine that could make functional parts with minimal hassle.”
Down to Earth Gardens
Garrett Menghini ’13
Down to Earth Gardens
Installation and maintenance of backyard vegetable gardens. Gardens are designed for optimal labor efficiency as well as optimal growing and production using automation, software and custom hardware.
“You keep staring at the patch of dirt in your yard, and that patch of dirt keeps staring back at you. Down to Earth Gardens puts that patch of dirt to work for you. We grow more produce in a month than a customer can buy for the same amount of money at the supermarket.”