August 2020 Meeting: A Human-Centric Economy of Things

Register for the August 13 meeting.

Join us for a virtual ITKAN meetup on Thursday evening, August 13. Alexander Renz, Managing Partner at New Mobility Consulting, will discuss some of his current work to create a “Human-Centric Economy of Things” that leverages the Internet of Things and Distributed Ledger Technologies to put humans back in control, rather than make them subject to manipulation and misinformation. His vision is to harness the creativity and collective intelligence of all global citizens to achieve the world’s sustainable development goals.

DATE AND TIME
Thu, August 13, 2020
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM CDT

LOCATION
On-line

A Human-Centric Economy of Things

The convergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) with Distributed ledger Technologies will create a Machine-to-Machine Economy in which devices will not only generate but share trusted data across symbiotic networks. Machines will become their own economic agents as part of frictionless marketplaces of goods and services that can operate without middlemen and orchestrate themselves around humans. Alex will explore why a Human-Centric Economy of Things represents a desirable future in view of data as the new oil, circular economies and sustainability goals.

Alexander Renz is passionate about leveraging exponential technologies to create a future of mobility and transportation that is sustainable and accessible for thriving communities, societies and economies.

Alex is a systems-of-systems thinker and has worked on the convergence of

mobility and transportation with energy, telecommunications and our broader smart city infrastructures. Ever since his work with Stuart Kauffman, the god-father of complexity science and former professor at the Santa Fe Institute, Alex has been fascinated with self-organizing, adaptive systems and agent-based models to understand complex system behavior. He also has been part of the Internet of Things (IoT) movement since its initial inception at the MIT Auto-ID Center in 2000. He believes in the power of decentralization and swarm intelligence.

He is a big proponent of self-sovereign identities and self-sovereign data give humans and machines control over digital identities and data. He is exploring data trusts and business models around symbiotic data sharing and data marketplaces. He is working on making machines their own economic agents that engage in data exchange and economic activity on behalf of their human masters. This includes frictionless, decentralized marketplaces for goods and services that put machines and humans back in control.

Alex believes that we can only solve the challenges ahead of us if we create a global movement inspired by desirable futures. His vision is to harness the creativity and collective intelligence of all global citizens to achieve the world’s sustainable development goals.

Some Past Speaking Engagements:

DLD logo

Handelsblatt | Auto Gipfel 2018 | @Volkswagen
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Darwin's Circle logo
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TWIN logo

Equal Access Administrators Dust Off their Gray Matter with Virtual Brain Training Session!

John Kennedy was a senior executive in process and project management when, in 2007, his brother David, a USMC Master Sergeant deployed in Afghanistan inquired whether John might apply his process efficiency background to reducing injuries and deaths from improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that Marines and all deployed forces were facing.

John applied his knowledge in creating process efficiencies for well-known companies like Abbott, Aon and Motorola to this life-changing charge from his brother. The premise was to use the developing science of neuroplasticity – the brain’s capacity at any point in your life to rewire its connections and develop new synapses across which information, memories, and knowledge can travel – coupled with a cognitive training regimen to provide Marines with life-saving insights and immediate decision-making skills in the combat environment.

From that process came Combat Brain Training. He focused on 5 critical executive function processes; anticipation, pattern recognition, working memory, focus and attention, and processing speed.

A unique element of John’s approach to brain training is that it’s paper based, although he trains most of his clients in a remote manner – even prior to the virus. There are several reasons for the paper-based approach. Among them are the capacity to train your peripheral vision to “anticipate” characters or sequences on paper vs. in the limited landscape of a screen and giving ourselves a break from screen fatigue.

Colleague Brian Chorba and I organized an introductory session for our administrators of Equal Access – a digital marketplace which SPR hosts to support the professional networking, training, and career development of students and candidates with disabilities across all industries, and our parent organization support staff from Yolobe. Yolobe is an 1871 start-up whose founder David Douglas has been a consultant for SPR for the past several years.

John invited us to a Zoom meeting, and you can tell by the photo that everyone enjoyed the session! Brian and I had both experienced Combat Brain Training at an ITKAN meeting in 2017, but I think we both enjoyed the refresher training. I find it’s a great way to bring your team together for a fun and instructive session that you can apply moving forward in your career, whether casually or in greater depth and with deeper commitment.

Feel free to reach out to me to be connected with John for a fun and effective manner to leverage our brain’s ability to rewire itself…or just go to www.combatbraintraining.com.

CANCELED: March 2020 Meeting: Data Design and Mobility with Clever Franke

We are cancelling ITKAN meeting this week related to the uncertain and developing COVID19 issue along with our members who are likely more vulnerable in some cases.

Thanks and we’ll reach back once we settle on an approach to ITKAN during this window.

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Join us for an exciting ITKAN meetup on Thursday evening, March 12 at the MTC Chicago. Bob Corporaal, Principal Designer / Managing Director US of Clever°Franke will discuss his thoughts on data design and why it’s relevant. He’ll also discuss the challenges and opportunities in working with data after sharing some examples. One of his interests is equity related to everyone’s mobility regardless of socio-economic, ableness, or other factors.

Clever°Franke is a a design company that uses data to create interactive products and experiences. They work with clients around the world including Google, HERE, and University of Oxford. You can check out their amazing data visualizations on their Work page. Of chief interest to us is their Chicago Mobility project in which they created a microsite about the infrastructure and mobility challenges of the Chicago metropolitan area and their influence on the everyday lives of inhabitants for the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP).

Bob Corporaal, USA Director & Principal Designer, coaches and guides Clever°Franke’s design team, maintaining their high standards of quality. He is also integral in the growth of their client base in both their Utrecht and Chicago offices. He is also an organizer for the Chicago Data Viz Community Meetup.

DATE AND TIME
Thu, March 12, 2020
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM CDT

LOCATION
Microsoft Technology Center
200 East Randolph Street
#200
Chicago, IL 60601

February 2020 Meeting: IoT Incubator – The Connectory

Register for the February 13 meeting.

Join us for an exciting ITKAN meetup on Th. evening, February 13th at the MTC Chicago for an immersive introduction into The Connectory, an IoT incubator collaboration sponsored by Bosch and 1871! An executive from Bosch will present on this unique space and initiative that’s the first in the Midwest to focus on exploring and developing IoT to address some of our most pressing challenges.

The Connectory isn’t just another co-working tech space, but a collaboration and networking environment for smart and engaged entrepreneurs to harness the power of an increasingly data connected world. We’ll also be introduced to the Advanced Mobility Initiative which represents the future of urban mobility!

This is the first meetup introducing our members and friends to the many unique tech incubator and creative spaces in Chicago. Future meetings will explore spaces like UI Labs, TechNexus, Blue Lacuna, 1871 and others…join us!

DATE AND TIME
Thu, February 13, 2020
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM CDT

LOCATION
Microsoft Technology Center
200 East Randolph Street
#200
Chicago, IL 60601

ITKAN Advisory Team Members and the Stein brothers gather with Year Up Director, Jack Crowe, after he is honored with the Rose Stein Light From Within award.

ITKAN’s 4th Annual Business After-Hours Recap

ITKAN’s 4th Annual Business After-Hours was last Thursday (the 14th) evening at the incredibly renovated Microsoft Technology Center Chicago. For those who registered and were unable to join us, we missed you and you missed a great evening. Sorry you were unable to make it, but we’ve attached a photo of the award celebration!

Top 10 things you experienced – or missed – at ITKAN’s 4th Annual Business After-Hours! ​

  1. Drinks and food in the MTC’s spacious and elegant front lobby with great conversation, networking, and camaraderie!
  2. A spontaneous tour by Adam Hecktman of our Advisory Team and Microsoft Philanthropies!
  3. Introductory remarks by Pat Maher with video of ITKAN meetings through 2019 and soundtrack!
  4. Keynote remarks by Danielle DuMerer focused on City of Chicago tech efforts to benefit all, including PwD and Shedd’s innovative programs engaging the disability community!
  5. Presentation by Adam Hecktman of a signed copy of George RR Martin’s A Game of Thrones to Danielle!
  6. Poignant remarks by Marc Stein, brother of Rose Stein, on the significance of the Light from Within Award!
  7. Presentation of the Rose Stein Light from Within Award to Jack Crowe, Executive Director of Year Up Chicago!
  8. Jack’s impassioned remarks following the award presentation that we all have responsibility to level the playing field for opportunity for youth with disabilities…YU Chicago wants to screen them for future cohorts!
  9. Val Kendrick, Advisory Team member and mother of Gerise – long-time ITKAN member and YU cohort grad – gives very personal closing remarks on Finding our Light from Within!
  10. Gina Figliulo of SPR keeps the bar open for our first after, after-hours much to the delight of all!

There you have it…hope to see everyone throughout 2020 and for our 5th Annual After-Hours!

Adam Hecktman explaining medical scan visuals on a screen in the MTC's hospital mock-up room

December 2019 Meeting – Planning for 2020

Register for the December 12 meeting.

Join us for our annual ITKAN Year-Ahead Planning Meeting for 2020 on Thursday, December 12th from 5-7pm at the MTC Chicago. We will also get a guided tour of the newly renovated space. Get excited for new speakers/presenters and increased networking initiatives in the new year. We are planning compelling meetings! Plan to join us and offer your input to keep ITKAN fresh, insightful, and exciting in 2020.

DATE AND TIME
Thu, December 12, 2019
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM CDT

LOCATION
Microsoft Technology Center
200 East Randolph Street
#200
Chicago, IL 60601

Photo of Danielle DuMerer

ITKAN’s Business After Hours with The Shedd Aquarium’s Danielle DuMerer

Register for the November 14 event.

Join us as we celebrate ITKAN’s corporate and civic relationships at our 4th annual ITKAN Business After-Hours on November 14th in the Envisioning Center at the MTC Chicago! Here’s a great video on the space!

Kick off the evening with a cocktail hour sponsored by SPR and network with colleagues or make new connections in the business and civic community. Danielle DuMerer, VP for Technology at the world-renowned Shedd Aquarium, and former CIO & Commissioner for City of Chicago, will provide keynote remarks!

We will be honoring Year Up Chicago Executive Director Jack Crowe and his staff with the Rose Stein Light from Within Award for their outstanding success in strengthening career opportunities in the tech space for promising young adults in Chicago and integrating the disability community within their mission.

DATE AND TIME
Thu, November 14, 2019
5:30 PM – 8:00 PM CDT

LOCATION
Microsoft Technology Center
200 East Randolph Street
#200
Chicago, IL 60601

October 2019 Meeting – Tech & Space Exploration

Register for the October 10th meeting.

Plan to join us on Thursday, October 10th as we reach for the stars in our Liquid Science techumentary year. We’ll look at technology’s far-reaching influence on The Future of Space Exploration with Museum of Science and Industry’s Dr. Voula Saridakis, curator and expert on the history of science and technology as well as astronomy and space sciences. She will explore the wonders of space exploration, its exciting future, and the critical role of advancements in technological innovation on humankind’s aspirations to advance space exploration.

Dr. Voula Saridakis is a curator at the Museum of Science and Industry and is part of the team that is responsible for the care of MSI’s 35,000+ artifacts. During her time at the Museum of Science and Industry, Dr. Saridakis has been responsible for the research and development of content for several exhibits. Outside of MSI, she maintains a twitter account @HistAstro where she posts images in the history of astronomy across all time periods and cultures. She credits her love of astronomy and spaceflight to growing up in South Florida, where yearly visits to Kennedy Space Center were a regular part of her childhood, and she has been fortunate to have met several astronauts over the years including Buzz Aldrin and Jim Lovell.

When
October 10, 2019
5-7:00 p.m.

Where
Aon Tower
Microsoft Technology Center
200 E Randolph Street, 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60601

September 2019 Meeting – VR Training in Healthcare

Register for the September 12th meeting.

As we continue to explore the Netflix documentary series “Liquid Science”, our September 12th meeting will highlight Evolving Technology’s Impact on Healthcare. We will demo a software in Oculus Virtual Reality (VR) simulations for nursing students and future care providers. Joliet Junior College (JJC) is the only community college in Illinois to have Embodied Labs empathy training VR. The VR software allows healthcare professionals to experience empathy for those with significant challenges such as hearing loss, vision loss, Alzheimer’s and cancer. It can also simulate scenarios related to a terminal illness, from diagnosis to final days of life. Please join us in an interactive and hands-on discussion on technology and how it will shape the future of medicine and IT careers!

Featured in this meeting will be Cameron Courter, a technologist for Joliet Junior College (JJC) in Multi-Media Programming. Cameron will lead a discussion and hands-on demo of one of the units used in the education of Nursing students at JJC.

When
September 12, 2019
5-7:00 p.m.

Where
Aon Tower
Microsoft Technology Center
200 E Randolph Street, 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60601