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The Speakers

  • Sebastian Thrun

    Sebastian Thrun

    Founder and President

    Udacity

  • Triangle modal 1 5ea77c61c584b8ef6df4fe5f9f1a953379199fc1b98e5dd6b49eaeb1b434632d Triangle modal 2 f0463fe70f415d36025211cd563ca084ce32ab9d12b3cc7f685c88991bde242d Sebastian Thrun

    Sebastian Thrun

    Founder and President

    Udacity

    Sebastian Thrun is a scientist, educator, inventor, and entrepreneur. He is founder, chairman, and president of Udacity, whose mission is to democratize education by providing lifelong, on-demand learning to millions of students in more than 190 countries.

    He is also the founder of Google X where he led the self-driving car, Google Glass and other projects. Earlier on, he led the Stanford Racing Team whose robot “Stanley” won the DARPA Grand Challenge. Sebastian continues as a research professor at Stanford University, and is the first recipient of the inaugural Smithsonian American Ingenuity Award for Education.

  • Dr. Ashwin Ram

    Dr. Ashwin Ram

    Head of AI R&D

    Amazon Alexa

  • Triangle modal 1 5ea77c61c584b8ef6df4fe5f9f1a953379199fc1b98e5dd6b49eaeb1b434632d Triangle modal 2 f0463fe70f415d36025211cd563ca084ce32ab9d12b3cc7f685c88991bde242d Dr. Ashwin Ram

    Dr. Ashwin Ram

    Head of AI R&D

    Amazon Alexa

    Dr. Ram is a distinguished artificial intelligence (AI) researcher and entrepreneur. He currently serves as the Senior Manager of AI Science for Alexa, the intelligent agent that powers Amazon Echo and other devices. He leads R&D initiatives to create advanced technologies for conversational agents, including the university-facing Alexa Prize competition.

    He managed the Interactive Intelligence research area at PARC, and was a professor in the College of Computing at Georgia Tech and director of the Cognitive Computing Lab. He has co-founded multiple startups, including OpenStudy, an online social learning network, and Enkia, which developed AI software for social media applications.

    He is a closet anthropologist and loves travel, people and culture.

  • Dr. Steven Abrams

    Dr. Steven Abrams

    VP of Developer Advocacy

    IBM Watson

  • Triangle modal 1 5ea77c61c584b8ef6df4fe5f9f1a953379199fc1b98e5dd6b49eaeb1b434632d Triangle modal 2 f0463fe70f415d36025211cd563ca084ce32ab9d12b3cc7f685c88991bde242d Dr. Steven Abrams

    Dr. Steven Abrams

    VP of Developer Advocacy

    IBM Watson

    Dr. Steven Abrams is an IBM Distinguished Engineer and the Vice President of Developer Advocacy in IBM Watson. In this and in prior roles including the Director of Technology for the Watson Ecosystem, his focus has been on nurturing and growing the universe of companies, students, and developers building solutions on top of Watson.

    Prior to this, he led Watson Life, a team of scientists, engineers, and designers tasked with understanding the role of cognitive systems in the lives of everyday consumers, delivering apps such as Chef Watson. In addition, he has had a wide variety of technical leadership roles across IBM Research and IBM Software group in areas as diverse as programming languages, models, and tools; human-computer interaction; computer music; robotics; computational geometry and more.

  • Maureen Fan

    Maureen Fan

    CEO and Co-Founder

    Baobab Studios

  • Triangle modal 1 5ea77c61c584b8ef6df4fe5f9f1a953379199fc1b98e5dd6b49eaeb1b434632d Triangle modal 2 f0463fe70f415d36025211cd563ca084ce32ab9d12b3cc7f685c88991bde242d Maureen Fan

    Maureen Fan

    CEO and Co-Founder

    Baobab Studios

    Maureen is CEO and co-founder of Baobab Studios, the industry's leading VR animation studio and has held leadership roles in film, gaming, and the consumer web. The company's first VR animation, Invasion!, launched to widespread critical acclaim, with Roth Kirschenbaum Films signed on to adapt it into a feature film.

    Before founding Baobab, Maureen was vice president of games at Zynga, where she oversaw three game studios including the FarmVille sequels, which contributed to 40% of the company’s revenues. Previously, she worked on Pixar's "Toy Story 3" film and at eBay in product management and UI design. Her most recent collaboration, "The Dam Keeper," was nominated for the 2015 Oscar Best Animated Short.

  • Dr. Rana Kaliouby

    Dr. Rana Kaliouby

    Co-Founder

    Affectiva

  • Triangle modal 1 5ea77c61c584b8ef6df4fe5f9f1a953379199fc1b98e5dd6b49eaeb1b434632d Triangle modal 2 f0463fe70f415d36025211cd563ca084ce32ab9d12b3cc7f685c88991bde242d Dr. Rana Kaliouby

    Dr. Rana Kaliouby

    Co-Founder

    Affectiva

    Rana el Kaliouby, Ph.D., is Chief Strategy and Science Officer and Co-founder of Affectiva, the leader in consumer emotion sensing and analytics on a global scale. She invented the company’s award winning, automated facial coding technology, Affdex, used by over 1.400 brands and one third of the Fortune Global 100 today.

    As a research scientist at MIT Media Lab Rana spearheaded the applications of facial coding. Her work has appeared in numerous publications including Reuters, Wired, Forbes, Fast Company, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and The New Yorker. She was recognized by Entrepreneur as one of the “7 Most Powerful Women To Watch In 2014”, inducted into the “Women in Engineering” Hall of Fame, a recipient of the 2012 Technology Review’s “Top 35 Innovators Under 35” Award and listed on Ad Age’s “40 under 40”.

  • Peter Lubbers

    Peter Lubbers

    Senior Program Manager

    Google Developer Training

  • Triangle modal 1 5ea77c61c584b8ef6df4fe5f9f1a953379199fc1b98e5dd6b49eaeb1b434632d Triangle modal 2 f0463fe70f415d36025211cd563ca084ce32ab9d12b3cc7f685c88991bde242d Peter Lubbers

    Peter Lubbers

    Senior Program Manager

    Google Developer Training

    Peter Lubbers is a Senior Program Manager at Google in charge of all aspects of Developer Training. In 2010, he started the San Francisco HTML5 Developer Group–the world’s largest HTML5 developer meetup with 14,000+ members. He is the author of “Pro HTML5 Programming” (Apress, 2011) and he was instrumental in developing and delivering cutting-edge HTML5 training curriculum at Kaazing.

    Previously, Peter worked as an information architect at Oracle, where he wrote the award-winning Oracle Application Server Portal Configuration Guide. Peter also architected and developed the internationalized Microsoft Office User Specialist (MOUS) Testing Framework.

    A native of the Netherlands, Peter served as a Special Forces commando in the Royal Dutch Green Berets. You might see him running triple marathons around Lake Tahoe or jump out of a plane and, yes, he does own that HTML5 license plate!

  • Gayle Laakmann McDowell

    Gayle Laakmann McDowell

    Founder and CEO

    CareerCup

  • Triangle modal 1 5ea77c61c584b8ef6df4fe5f9f1a953379199fc1b98e5dd6b49eaeb1b434632d Triangle modal 2 f0463fe70f415d36025211cd563ca084ce32ab9d12b3cc7f685c88991bde242d Gayle Laakmann McDowell

    Gayle Laakmann McDowell

    Founder and CEO

    CareerCup

    Gayle Laakmann McDowell is the founder/CEO of CareerCup.com and the author of Cracking the *interview books (Cracking the Coding Interview, Cracking the PM Interview, and Cracking the Tech Career).

    Her background is in software development, with a BSE/MSE in Computer Science from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from the Wharton School. She previously worked as a software engineer at Google, Microsoft, and Apple.

    In addition to running CareerCup and writing books, she consults with tech companies on their engineering hiring process and with startups to help them through acquisition interviews. She can be found online at twitter.com/gayle, facebook.com/gayle, and gayle.com.

  • Steve Blank

    Steve Blank

    Entrepreneur, Author & Professor

    Stanford University

  • Triangle modal 1 5ea77c61c584b8ef6df4fe5f9f1a953379199fc1b98e5dd6b49eaeb1b434632d Triangle modal 2 f0463fe70f415d36025211cd563ca084ce32ab9d12b3cc7f685c88991bde242d Steve Blank

    Steve Blank

    Entrepreneur, Author & Professor

    Stanford University

    Serial entrepreneur Steve Blank is credited with launching the Lean Startup Movement, and revolutionizing the practice and teaching of entrepreneurship and innovation. He has redefined how to build successful startups by teaching entrepreneurs how to rapidly search for a successful business model by using customer development and agile engineering.

    Working in Silicon Valley since 1978, Blank has been part of or co-founded eight startups. E.piphany, an enterprise software company; a supercomputer firm, Ardent; Macintosh graphics supplier, SuperMac; a military intelligence systems supplier, ESL; video game developer, Rocket Science Games, and two microprocessor companies, Zilog and MIPS.

More Speakers to Come!

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