National Center for Technology Innovation
 
2010 NCTI Technology Innovators Conference: Breakthrough Learning - Transform the Future; November 15-16, 2010; The Madison Hotel; Washington, DC

Podcasts: 2010 Speaker Interviews

Speakers and participants were interviewed at the 2010 NCTI Technology Innovators Conference. Hear summaries of their presentations and reflections on how the themes of the conference may influence their work. Transcripts are available.

Milton Chen Photo
Milton ChenMilton Chen is senior fellow and executive director emeritus at the George Lucas Educational Foundation. During his 12 years as executive director, the foundation’s Edutopia.org Web site became known as a destination for films, articles, and other resources on innovation in schools. His career has spanned four decades at the intersection of media, technology, and learning. He was a founding director of the KQED Center for Education (PBS) and director of research at Sesame Workshop. Chen has taught at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and has been a Fulbright New Century Scholar at the University of Edinburgh. He chairs the advisory council for the Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children’s Media at St. Vincent College and is a member of the National Park System advisory board. He serves on the board of directors of ConnectEd: The California Center for College and Career and the San Francisco School Alliance. His recent book is Education Nation: Six Leading Edges of Innovation in Our Schools, released in 2010 from ASCD. His work has been honored by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s Fred Rogers Award, Sesame Workshop’s Elmo Award, the Association of Educational Service Agencies, the Congressional Black Caucus, and two science centers, The Exploratorium and the Lawrence Hall of Science.
Milton discusses his new book and vision for education, “to emulate in some ways the modern workplace, where we’re all working together in teams and we want schools and teachers to view themselves as trying to create a classroom where kids get that opportunity, too.”

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C. Sidney Burrus Photo
C. Sidney BurrusC. Sidney Burrus is the Maxfield-Oshman Professor Emeritus of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Senior Strategist of the Connexions Project, and research professor at Rice University in Houston, Texas. The Connexions Project started in 1999 at Rice University to apply modern technology and theory to education. It has grown to be one of the most used Open Educational Resources (OER) in the world. Burrus has been closely involved with it since its founding and has lectured and published widely on Connexions. Over the last 40 years, he has been dean of engineering, chair of the Electrical Engineering Department, and director of a research institute at Rice. He has authored five books and more than 250 articles on digital signal processing, received teaching awards from Rice, and received research awards from the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) and others. His research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, NASA, and industrial grants. Burrus is a Fellow of the IEEE and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and he has received the IEEE Kilby Medal and the Association of Rice Alumni Gold Medal.
“We’ve got a real revolution on our hands.” Connexions is a library of open education resources, the next generation of the book. Hear Sidney’s description of the history and potential of the project.

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Heather Horst Photo
Heather HorstHeather Horst received her Ph.D. in anthropology from University College London before joining the MacArthur Foundation’s Digital Youth project. Her dissertation, Back a Yaad: Constructions of Home Among Jamaica’s Return Migrant Community, examined the role of material culture in the process of return migration and community development. After completing her dissertation, she returned to Jamaica to examine development, new information and communication technologies, and the digital divide as part of a large-scale Department for International Development–funded project titled “Information Society: Emergent Technologies and Development in the South,” which compared the relationship between Information and Communications Technologies and development in Ghana, India, Jamaica, and South Africa. Her book with Daniel Miller, The Cell Phone: An Anthropology of Communication (Oxford and New York: Berg, 2006), explores the specific implications of the cell phone and the cell phone industry in rural and urban Jamaica. Horst’s research on the Digital Youth project extended her interests in the materiality of information and communication technologies as well as relationships of power and access.
Learning inside and outside classrooms, in formal and informal settings. Hear what the Digital Youth panel at the 2010 NCTI Conference discussed.

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Paul Jesukiewicz Photo
Paul JesukiewiczPaul Jesukiewicz is the director of the Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) Initiative for the Office of the Secretary of Defense. In this position, Jesukiewicz is responsible for directing and implementing the ADL Initiative within the Department of Defense as well as other government organizations, academia, and industry around the world. He provides direction for the development and refinement of the Sharable Content Object Reference Model (SCORM®), the ADL Registry, and the continued expansion of the ADL Initiative through research and development of new and emerging learning technologies.
The Department of Defense, through the Advanced Distributed Learning Lab is interested in virtual reality and immersive environment technology and “making it more user-friendly, more cost effective, and then making it simple to use not just in a complicated environment.”

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Kate Seelman Photo
Kate SeelmanKate Seelman is co-scientific director of the National Science Foundation–supported Quality of Life Technology Engineering Research Center. She is one of two Americans serving on the World Health Organization’s nine-member international editorial committee to guide the development of the first world report on disability. She served as director of the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) in the Clinton Administration. She is widely published, with a focus on health and technology policy for people with disabilities and older adults. Her most recent articles have appeared in publications such as Engineering, Medicine and Biology (2008), Encyclopedia of Special Education (2007), Encyclopedia of Bioengineering (2006), and Disabilities Studies Quarterly (2005). She is the author of the Foreword and a chapter on technology for the Handbook of Smart Technology for Aging, Disability and Independence: Computing and Engineering Design and Application and co-editor of the Handbook of Disability Studies. During her career, she has received numerous awards including the Gold Key Award from the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine, appointment as an honorary fellow in the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA), a National Science Foundation Assistantship, and a distinguished Mary Switzer Fellowship.
“If we want people with disabilities to perform like everybody else, then we have to have a level playing field in science and technology as well as in other areas of life like education.” Hear how Kate sees the landscape of AT investment, development, commercialization, and market growth.

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Sean DeWitt Photo
Sean deWittSean deWitt is passionate about unlocking human potential through innovation in entrepreneurship, technology and microfinance. At Grameen Foundation, deWitt first worked with the Village Phone companies in Uganda and Rwanda, then moved to Indonesia to lead our efforts to reinvent the model in a vastly different market. He currently oversees the local public-private partnerships, manages the Application Laboratory R&D effort to build mobile services to improve the livelihoods of the undeserved, and is responsible for the growth of our implementing partner, a social enterprise serving the poor with microfranchise business opportunities. deWitt joined Grameen Foundation with 10 years experience in the public, nonprofit and private sector. He led the development of an open-source solution for small businesses for a New York City based foundation, optimized supply chains and logistics with Intel Corporation and Walt Disney Company, helped design and implement the first two releases of the SAP mobile sales force solution with Fortune 500 clients in Europe and the Americas as a management consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers, and led technology projects with local partners in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean with the US Department of State to help build electronic trade opportunities.
“When we think about access to information the first step is to make it accessible, the next step is to make it relevant and make sure it’s relevant, but the third thing is to make sure it’s actionable.” Hear more about what the Grameen Foundation is doing around the world.

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Cori Lathan Photo
Cori LathanCori Lathan is founder and CEO of AnthroTronix, Inc. (ATinc), a biomedical engineering research and development company focused on the development of enabling technologies including robotics. She is also the founder of AT KidSystems, a spinoff of ATinc, which distributes alternative computer interfaces and educational software. Her work with children with disabilities has been featured in Forbes, Time, and the New Yorker magazines, as well as led to such distinctions as Maryland’s “Top Innovator of the Year,” one of MIT Technology Review Magazine’s “Top 100 World Innovators.” She has also been named a Technology Pioneer and a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. Lathan is actively involved in educational outreach programs that empower women and minorities in science and technology. She is the founder of Keys to Empowering Youth, an engineering mentoring program for young girls and she is also an adviser to the FIRST and VEX robotics programs.
What is a therapeutic robot? Cori Lathan defines her original concept as a “device that was adaptable, programmable, could be manipulated and used by the child to explore their environment, that could be adapted to the home or the clinic or schools, and that you could continually design interventions to meet therapeutical, educational goals, developmental goals, and also embedding and data collection capabilities.” Learn more about Cosmobot.

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Chauncy Rucker Photo


NCTI thanks Chauncy Rucker again for his outstanding work conducting and editing the audio interviews with speakers at the 2010 NCTI Technology Innovators Conference. View Chauncy’s other projects at the ConnSENSE Bulletin and the Assistive Technology Oral History Project.