Christopher Kao

Christopher Kao is a software engineer at WePay in Redwood City, CA. Previously, Chris was a robotics software engineer at Built Robotics, a San Francisco-based startup developing autonomous excavators for construction.

In 2017, Chris founded Philly By Drone, an aerial photography and cinematography company primarily serving the marketing needs of real estate companies in the Greater Philadelphia Area. He continues to operate Philly By Drone today. In May 2019, the company expanded into the San Francisco Bay Area market under the brand Droneshot.

Chris graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2019 with 3 degrees: a master's degree in robotics from the School of Engineering, an undergraduate degree in computer science from the School of Engineering, and an undergraduate degree in business from the Wharton School. During his 5 years at Penn, Chris was the official photographer for the school, was part of a latin dance troupe, and open-sourced his drone video footage of Penn and Philadelphia which have been used in over 40 video projects.

Outside of work, Chris enjoys running, taking photos, and occasionally salsa dancing.


Engineering Projects

  1. Engineering Thesis - "Near Future Pose Estimation of an Autonomous Racecar" (Paper)
  2. Research Paper - "F1/10: An Open-Source Autonomous Cyber-Physical Platform" (Paper)
  3. Class Syllabus - "ESE 680 - F1/10: Autonomous Racing" (Paper)

Extracurricular Presentations:

  1. TEDxPenn 2017 "Things I Learned From Flying Drones" (11 min) (Video)
  2. Wharton Tech Club 2019 "4 Things to Know If You're Starting a Drone Company" (Video 1) (Video 2)
  3. GRASP Robotics Lab 2017 "Successful Applications of Drones to Real Estate and Its Many Challenges" (Slides)
  4. Wharton Energy Club "My Experience Making the Energy Hub Documentary" (Slides)

Extracurricular Films:

  1. "A City Divided: Philadelphia's Energy Hub" (16 min) (Video)
  2. "When I Get Famous (Official Music Video)" - Penn Counterparts (3 min) (Video)
  3. "Nashe Si Chadh Gayi / Hymn for the Weekend" (Music Video) - Penn Masala (4 min) (Video)
  4. "Welcome to Penn!" - New Student Orientation Video" (3 min) (Video)

Original website design credit goes to Gary Lauder.
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