What does this button do?

What is this podcast about?

Agh no, not another podcast! Yes, we had the exact same thought, especially because every Tom, Dick and Harry has one these days. But as much as we initially resisted to have our own, we know that now is the right time to just go for it and present to you the all-encompassing hardtech podcast. Indeed, a lot of prototyping is happening behind MakerGarage doors that is not shared with you; too many ideas being thought of, but not talked about, and that’s exactly what we wanted to change. With our first series of the hardtech podcast: “What does this button do” – we want to sweeten your days during the pre-Christmas season and share with you the funniest, most exciting, entertaining and unique conversations we have had.


“What does this button do” – was created and produced by Roi Tal who explored the ever-changing world of hardtech startups (= hardware with tech components). He and his co-host Christoph Neye, co-founder of MotionLab.Berlin introduce us to the innovative startups based at our hardtech innovation hub in Berlin. Hear about startups such as a mushroom helmet, a magic wand water heater, and a robot called Caron. Together, we address the ups and downs of funding a startup, failures and successes, as well as prototyping, tech, hardware, and so much more. 

Season 1 | Episode 1

3D Printing Bricks - Cindy Valdez | migration of matter
What does this button do? with Cindy Valdez
Date of recording: 30.04.2021

[Date of release: 21.12.2021]

Have you ever asked yourself what new possibilities 3D printing will bring and how we can use it to make our lives more efficient? In the 1st pilot episode we were joined by Cindy Valdez. Cindy is an artist who prints 3D ceramics!
She combines art with tech which certainly brings her creativity to the next level. Originally from Peru, Cindy came to Berlin to study product design which is when she fell in love with 3D printing. By combining this new passion with her love for nature, earth and texture she came up with the complex idea of 3D printing clay bricks. And if that’s not enough – she even builds her own 3D printers.
During this conversation Cindy tells us about her journey to find her passion, and the difficult learning curve of how to develop her own tech. She shares her goal of educating people on the importance of clay and natural elements, how she got funding, what she plans for the future, and a lot more.


Contact the interviewee

Instagram: cindyserrat

Email: cvaldezserr@gmail.com

Season 1 | Episode 2

Soft-exoskeletons for people - Facundo Gutierrez | Motorskins

[Date of release: 23.12.2021]

For episode 2 we are joined by Facundo Gutierrez from MotorSkins. According to MotorSkins they “build movement”, to put it simply they build soft-exoskeletons for people, to bring confidence into your walk. Facundo is one of the founders of MotorSkins, which has been through a lot of changes throughout the years. 


But their goal was always to widen their reach and innovate the exoskeleton sector more and more.

During this conversation Facundo tells us about complexibility of the exoskeleton industry and how they attempt to revolutionize it by making it something people will be proud to wear. He shares what were the key factors when MototSkins decided to change routes, what their biggest challenges are when going into the market, and much more.

Contact the interviewee

Instagram: motor.skins
Email: contact@motorskins.com 
Website: https://www.motorskins.com/ 

What does this button do? with Facundo
Date of recording: 06.05.2021

Season 1 | Episode 3

Caron - the robot that conects people with places | Moe Karawia from polymath.vision
What does this button do?
Date of recording: 11.05.2021

[Date of release: 27.12.2021]

A robot called Caron? Yes! A reality in which people who can’t leave home can still experience the outside world? Yes!


Polymath.Vision is trying to connect people with places using the revolutionary Caron robot. Their three patent pending technologies provide next generation two-way telecommunication solutions, revolutionizing digital healthcare and remote therapy. In this episode we got the chance to speak to Moe Karawia about the journey of developing Caron, and how it will change the world. 

Moe tells us his inspiring story of how through his sick teacher he came up with the idea of bringing the outside experiences to her screen at home. He tells us about the super team that he managed to bring together and how a philosopher can contribute to your business strategy. During the conversation Moe also shares the biggest challenges of getting such complex technology into a small robot, how he managed to get funding, what he most strives for, and much more.


Contact the interviewee

Email: moekarawia@gmail.com 

Website: https://polymath.vision/ 

Season 1 | Episode 4

The magic heating rod | Wachtang Budagaschwili from Heatle

[Date of release: 29.12.2021]
Why are kettles so unsustainable? Why do you have to heat up at least half a liter for just one cup of tea and take up so much energy?


This is a very exciting episode with one of our favorite startups – Heatle; the world’s first inductive immersion heater, heats liquids in the vessel of your choice to the desired temperature for a pure, sustainable experience without plastic, BPA, lime residue, noise and unnecessary waste of energy. Some refer to it as a magic wand, it really looks and feels that way. Co-founder and master salesman Wachtang joined us to talk about his inspiring startup.

During this conversation Wachtang tells us about his past as an actor, how that helps his daily business life, how he accidentally met his co-founder David and how together they came up with Heatle. He shares his opinion about funding in the startup scene, how they plan to reduce waste, and how he sees the future of consumer goods.


Contact the interviewee

Instagram: heatle.official 

Email: wachtang@heatle.de 

Website: heatle.de

What does this button do?
Date of recording: 11.05.2021

Season 1 | Episode 5

Upcycled off-grid solar systems | Lisa Wendzich SunCrafter
What does this button do?
Date of recording: 25.05.2021

[Date of release: 03.01.2022]

How can you make energy more sustainable without taking up too many resources? And how can you possibly run a startup and a family at the same time?


Lisa Wendzich from SunCrafter joins us for a talk about energy, motivation, business, and parenting in this very special episode. SunCrafter produces and provides solar systems offering energy access independent from existing power grids. Their systems work wherever needed – both in urban environments and rural areas.

Lisa tells us about the struggles of maintaining a business during the corona pandemic and how SunCrafter decided to take advantage of this and pivot their business model. She shares her thoughts about the environment and contemporary energy supply, how it is to run a startup as a parent, where her life was in the past, where it’s going now, and much more.


Contact the interviewee

Instagram: suncrafter_solargeneration 

Email: info@suncrafter.de 

Website: www.suncrafter.de 

Season 1 | Episode 6

A helmet made out of mushrooms | Duncan Cornes from Compositive.bio
What does this button do?
Date of recording: 08.06.2021

[Date of release: 10.01.2022]

Do you love mushrooms or do you hate them? Seems like it’s either love at first sight or a constant repulse. But what’s for sure is that we all love keeping our head safe, especially while cycling! 


In this episode we spoke to our friend Duncan Cornes from Compositive.bio, who are building a helmet (and other products) from mushrooms! Yes, you heard right. They use mushroom mycelium. Mycelium offers a truly sustainable alternative to conventional Styrofoam, with similar impact properties, and low growing costs. The environmental impact of Styrofoam is immense, and it is Compositive’s vision to completely replace it. Many questions came up when dealing with this fascinating topic. Duncan shared insights about growing your own mycelium and why big cooperates actually insist on producing more and more plastic. He shares his thoughts about leaving corporate life and founding a startup, coming up with hundreds of ideas until you find the right one, the best way to stay motivated, and much more.


Contact the interviewee

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/compositive-bio/ 

Email: info@compositive.bio

Website: compositive.bio

Season 1 | Episode 7

Performance tracking for adventure sports | Ingo Boegemann from truemetrics

[Date of release: 17.01.2022]

Ever wondered how exercise performance apps work and what is the future of this field? How can one track sports like surfing or skiing? Is that even possible?

For this season finale we spoke to Ingo Bögemann from TrueMetrics.  Truemetrics is a solution for detailed motion tracking and performance analysis for snow sports, surfing, MTB and more.

Ingo tells us about his shift from traditional mechanical engineering to starting his own startup, selling it, and then coming up with a new company that combines one of his biggest passions – adventure sports. We talk about the possibilities and importance of tracking performance and improving constantly, Ingo’s team and how they complete each other, how to blow off steam after a long day of work, and much more.

Ingo’s top secret favorite spots for camping: Lehnitzsee and Grabowsee close to  Oranienburg.

Contact the interviewee

Email: Ingo@truemetrics.io

Website: truemetrics.io

What does this button do?

The hosts:




“Through my work experience and studies, I have gained knowledge in marketing, content creation, radio, project management, and more. I am passionate about stories, people, art, and how it all comes together.”

Christoph Neye



“When we founded MotionLab.Berlin, it was always about the people behind the product. I love to explore their motivations, their story and their passion.”