Brand Identity, Film & Motion Graphics, Digital Design

A prescience-driven brand identity for Intrinsic, a graduate of X, Alphabet's moonshot factory, that makes-tangible the software powering the future of robotics.

Pentagram has designed the brand identity and a bespoke, generative visual tool for Intrinsic, a robotics software and AI company on a mission to make industrial robotics accessible and usable for businesses and developers at both large and mid-scale. Part of Google’s Alphabet family, Intrinsic graduated from Google X in 2021 and is headed by the British tech entrepreneur Wendy Tan White. 

Intrinsic approached Pentagram whilst still in incubation at Google X with the challenge of helping them visualise and communicate its industry-defining product. While robots are undoubtedly incredible productivity tools, the robotics industry faces several major barriers to realising their full potential. Huge set-up costs for hardware and infrastructure are matched with a lack of interoperability between products—needing expert developers to create bespoke software deployments for every task—meaning robotics is reserved for only the biggest and wealthiest businesses.

Intrinsic wants to see robots become more familiar, usable, and dependable tools—accessible to a wide range of industries and scales—and elevate robotics as a future-facing leader of change. They have done this through the creation of a holistic software platform that can interface with manufacturer-agnostic hardware and provide state-of-the-art AI tools that respond and adapt to new problems to find highly efficient solutions without the previous need of high-level user expertise.

Pentagram’s solution centres on the narrative of prescience (having foresight) to describe the ability of the Intrinsic platform to solve complicated problems through the simulation of thousands of potential outcomes. The concept is manifested primarily through the Intrinsic Tool—an image and video-making platform. The Tool creates semi-abstract visualisations of a robotic arm, generatively animated through inverse kinematics to replicate real-world robotic motion. Built-in behavioural parameters represent the key functions of Intrinsic’s software (Simulation, Sensing, Learning and Collaboration). Beyond presets, users can fully customise the motion, camera and aesthetic parameters within the scene, allowing generation of image and video for use across the full spectrum of brand outputs. Pentagram also built the Intrinsic Tool as a web-native app that is implemented on Intrinsic’s website to produce real-time generative visuals. 

The expressive visuals outputted by the Intrinsic Tool use gradient ‘echos’ to indicate potential future positions, with the addition of a particle visual effect that renders the echos in mid-formation—responsive to new eventualities; quantum possibilities in-flux, ready to be collapsed into the best solution. These visuals are offset by a brutalist and bold graphic language, combining flat colour with a minimalist and technical typographic and iconographic system. The striking combination of a primary brand grey with a bright, saturated secondary palette can appear both technical and expressive when needed. 

The bespoke wordmark is simple and modern, combining structured, grotesque qualities with moments of higher-contrast humanism. It is a confident style that reveals sweeping curves at larger sizes, mirroring the kinematic motion of the robot arm. The wordmark is paired with an initialled symbol, both with complimentary motion behaviours that present kinematic movement and prescience in animated reveals.

Intrinsic’s wordmark is paired with ABC Dinamo’s Diatype—a style which also balances a grotesque basis with more humanist stroke contrast. Using a combination of the default width and semi-monospaced, typographic contrast is created between the subtle, industrial nature of the semi-mono and the softened regular width, allowing for changes of visual tone when moving between business-facing and engineer-facing content.

Pentagram’s design team also created a series of UI and illustrative icons for use across the identity. Matched with the simplicity and uniformity of the wordmark, symbol and typographic language, the icons are robust and functional with an additional prescience motion behaviour used for functional icons, and the reveal of orthographic 3-dimensional depth, that mirrors the robotic arm within the image-making tool, for expressive icons. 

Just as the personal computing revolution enabled everyone to access computers, industrial robotics is now on the cusp of a similar shift. Intrinsic is perfectly placed to capitalise on this, and Pentagram’s new identity will help Intrinsic cement its unique position at the forefront of this new robotics revolution.

Jody Hudson-Powell
Luke Powell
Project team
Jack Llewellyn
Nav Bhatia
Luis Gutiérrez
Katee Hui
Felix Faire
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