I spent the first week of March in Des Moines, Iowa for Celebrate Innovation Week. During my visit, I had the opportunity to get to know the other presenters, be exposed to all kinds of fascinating topics, and learn about the numerous ways they are re-imagining boundaries in their respective fields. In celebration, I am introducing them to you here, so you too can be inspired:
Rob Manning is the chief engineer for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL) Engineering and Science Directorate. He has been designing, testing, operating, and managing robotic spacecraft for over 35 years including Galileo to Jupiter, Cassini to Saturn, Magellan to Venus, and Pathfinder and Curiosity to Mars. Manning has received four NASA medals, is in the Aviation Week Magazine Space Laureate Hall of Fame at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, has received two honorary PhDs, and has a minor planet named after him.
James Barrat is an author and filmmaker. His book Our Final Invention: Artificial Intelligence and the End of the Human Era started a national conversation about the dangers of artificial intelligence. His films provoke viewers to think about the machines whose intelligence could overtake our own and if we can rely on their “kindness” to survive.
Dr. Jill Pruetz
Dr. Jill Pruetz is a professor and primatologist. Her studies of non-human primates such as chimpanzees, spider monkeys, and howling monkeys have led her to conduct fieldwork in Peru, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Kenya, and Senegal. Supported by the National Geographic Society and the National Science Foundation, Pruetz focuses her research on the influence of ecology on primates and the implications her findings might have on early human feeding and social behavior.
Rob Wolfe is a lifelong “picker” of antiques and original paint cars and trucks. He is the brother of Mike Wolfe, of History Channel’s hit reality show American Pickers. Rob can often be seen on the show traveling the country and digging through old barns and garages looking for what he calls, “rusty gold.”
#ciweek #beinspired #innovation #spaceexploration