#mediaX2017 Conference

April 20, 2017 8:30 AM -
April 20, 2017 5:00 PM
Technology augments our sense-making - helping us filter signals, manipulate data and create representations. How does the interactive human-machine sense-making process work? How might technology align with human scale, timing and representation to make it work better? How might human fundamentals help us create technologies that will enhance the human experience?



    TAPTH@T is the only advanced tap dance performing group at Stanford University. We strive to bring tap dancing to the forefront of dance culture by fusing a wide variety of styles and musical genres, as well as improvisation, constantly pushing the envelope when it comes to tap performance and improvisation. All pieces are examples of student choreography—past performances have been choreographed to music by Michael Jackson, Beyoncé, and Vance Joy, as well as from the Disney musical Mulan!

  • Karina Alexanyan

    Moderator: Karina Alexanyan, mediaX, Stanford University

    Karina Alexanyan is the Member Benefits Manager with mediaX at Stanford University. Dr. Alexanyan’s research background is in global social media networks, technology, and education. She has consulted for leading academic, corporate and non-profit clients, including Stanford, Harvard and Columbia Universities. Alexanyan holds a PhD in Communications from Columbia University School of Journalism, a M.A. in Communication from NYU and a BA in Linguistics and Modern Languages from the Claremont Colleges.

  • Ajay Chander

    Ajay Chander leads R&D teams in imagining and building new human-centric technologies and products. His work has spanned digital healthcare and wellness, software security, and behavior design. Currently, Dr. Chander directs the Digital Life Lab at Fujitsu Labs of America, which builds solutions that acknowledge and leverage the “humans-in-the-loop” in an increasingly digitally dense world. At Fujitsu, Dr. Chander also provides technical and thought/strategy leadership for all aspects of the interplay between technology and the human experience, with a focus on human-centric systems and solutions. Dr. Chander holds a PhD in Computer Science from Stanford University.


  • Megan French Megan French is a PhD student in Communication at Stanford. She is interested in how people understand online environments and how one’s perceptions affect the way they engage and relate to others within cyber-social systems, such as social networking sites, online dating sites, and peer-to-peer platforms. Her work focuses on people’s expectations surrounding their interactions online, including expectations for response when posting on social media, as well as people’s beliefs about the role of algorithms, such as the Facebook News Feed, in mediating those online interactions. Social Media Folkonomies Megan’s work on folk theories of social feeds has examined people’s implicit beliefs about how the Facebook News Feed and Twitter feed operate. Leveraging people’s use of metaphors, she has found that there are four core folk theories for social feeds that tap into people’s evaluation of a system, how they think the system works, and their beliefs about the system’s intent.
  • Kendall Haven Kendall Haven is a mediaX Distinguished Visiting Scholar. Haven is the only U.S. Military Academy at West Point graduate to turn professional storyteller. Now a master storyteller, Haven has performed for over 6 million worldwide during his 30 year career and has led the research effort for the National Storytelling Assn. and International Storytelling Center into the architecture of effective story structure and into the process of story-based influence and persuasion. Haven was the only storyteller or story writer recruited as part of the recent U.S. Department of Defense DARPA research program to explore the cognitive neurology of how stories exert influence.
  • Michal Kosinski

    Michal Kosinski is the Assistant Professor in Organizational Behavior at the Graduate School of Business, Stanford University. After receiving his PhD in Psychology from the University of Cambridge (UK) in 2014, Kosinski spent a year as a Postdoctoral Scholar at the Computer Science Department at Stanford University. Kosinski’s research had a significant impact on both academia and the industry. His findings featured in The Economist, inspired two TED talks, and prompted a discussion in the EU Parliament. In 2013, Kosinski was listed among the 50 most influential people in Big Data by DataIQ and IBM, while three of his papers were placed among Altmetrics’ “Top 100 Papers That Most Caught the Public Imagination.”

  • Amy Kruse Amy Kruse is the Chief Scientific Officer of the Platypus Institute, an applied neuroscience research organization that translates cutting edge neuroscience discoveries into practical tools and programs that enhance the human experience. Dr. Kruse’s primary focus at the Platypus Institute is a project entitled "Human 2.0” - a multi-faceted initiative that helps selected individuals and teams leverage neuro-technology to generate meaningful competitive advantages. Previously, Dr. Kruse was VP and CTO of Cubic Global Defense, where she oversaw the company’s research and development (R&D) programs, as well as a government civilian Program Manager at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), where she created and oversaw the Agency’s first performance-oriented neuroscience program. Dr. Kruse’s efforts at DARPA generated scientific breakthroughs in areas including augmented cognition, accelerated learning, cognitive enhancement, team neuro-dynamics, and brain stimulation, and they resulted in the creation of multiple programs that measurably enhanced both individual and team performance in several branches of the US military. Dr. Kruse is a member of several defense panels and advisory boards for organizations including the National Academies and the Defense Science Board. She is also the author of numerous scientific papers, chapters, and articles. Dr. Kruse earned a Bachelor of Science in Cell and Structural Biology and a PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, where she was awarded a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship.
  • Leonard Medlock Leonard Medlock is a Director at EdSurge, where he leads the Concierge program, a match-making service between K-12 schools and districts and education service providers. Previously, Medlock was a coach and lecturer at the Stanford d.school and a Research Assistant at Stanford’s Project Based Learning Lab, where his work on global teamwork and collaboration was published in the International Journal of AI & Society. Medlock teaches graduate courses on designing for social impact at Claremont Lincoln University. He is a 2015 Pahara NextGen Fellow and holds a M.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Education in Learning, Design and Technology and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University.
  • William Newsome Bill Newsome is an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Professor of Neurobiology at the Stanford University School of Medicine. Dr. Newsome is also the Director of the Stanford University Neurosciences Institute. Dr. Newsome is a leading investigator in systems and cognitive neuroscience. He has made fundamental contributions to our understanding of the neural mechanisms underlying visual perception and simple forms of decision making. Among his honors are the Rank Prize in Optoelectronics, the Spencer Award, the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award of the American Psychological Association, the Dan David Prize of Tel Aviv University, the Karl Spencer Lashley Award of the American Philosophical Society, and the Champalimaud Vision Award. He was elected to membership in the National Academy of Sciences in 2000, and to the American Philosophical Society in 2011. Newsome recently co-chaired the NIH BRAIN working group, charged with forming a national plan for the coming decade of neuroscience research in the United States. He received a B.S. degree in physics from Stetson University and a Ph.D. in biology from the California Institute of Technology.
  • Allison Okamura

    Allison Okamura is a Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Stanford University, with a courtesy appointment in Computer Science. She was previously Professor and Vice Chair of Mechanical Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. Her research focuses on developing the principles and tools needed to realize advanced robotic and human-machine systems capable of haptic (touch) interaction, particularly for biomedical applications. Haptic systems are designed and studied using both analytical and experimental approaches. Haptic Systems for Enhancing the Human Sense of Touch Haptic (touch) feedback can play myriad roles in enhancing human performance and safety in skilled tasks. In teleoperated surgical robotics, force feedback improves the ability of a human operator to effectively manipulate and explore patient tissues that are remote in distance and scale. In virtual and augmented reality, wearable and touchable devices use combinations of kinesthetic (force) and cutaneous (tactile) feedback to make rich, immersive haptic feedback both more compelling and practical. In this talk, I will present a collection of novel haptic devices, control algorithms, and user performance studies that demonstrate a wide range of effective design approaches and promising real-world applications for haptic feedback.

  • Roy Pea Roy Pea is the David Jacks Professor of Education and the Learning Sciences at Stanford University, Co-Founder and Faculty Director of the H-STAR Institute, Director of the PhD Program in Learning Sciences and Technology Design, and Professor, Computer Science (Courtesy). Since 1981, Dr. Pea has been exploring how information technologies can support and advance the scientific understanding and practices of learning and teaching, with particular focus on topics in science, mathematics, and technology education and their associated symbolic and communicative interchanges that are integral to learning. Dr. Pea has contributed to building a number of interdisciplinary research centers and complex projects that engage researchers, educators, and industry leaders in collaborative design partnerships for uses of learning technologies. His research centers on how innovations in computing and communications technologies and affiliated socio-cultural practices can influence learning, thinking, and educational systems. Two major lines of research are: (1) developing a new paradigm for everyday networked video interactions for learning and communications (http://diver.stanford. edu), and (2) investigating how informal and formal learning can be better understood and connected, as Co-PI of the LIFE Center (http://life-slc.org) funded by the National Science Foundation as one of several large-scale national Science of Learning Centers.
  • Brian Pierce

    Brian Pierce is the Deputy Director of DARPA's Information Innovation Office (I2O). This is Dr. Pierce's second tour at the agency, having served as the deputy office director of the Strategic Technology Office from 2005 to 2010. Dr. Pierce has almost 30 years of experience developing advanced technologies in the aerospace/defense industry. Prior to joining DARPA, he was a technical director in Space and Airborne Systems at the Raytheon Company. From 2002-2005, he was executive director of the Electronics Division at Rockwell Scientific Company.


  • Martha Russell Martha Russell is Executive Director of mediaX at Stanford University, Senior Research Scholar at the Human Sciences Technology Advanced Research Institute, and Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Creativity and Capital at The University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Russell leads business alliances and interdisciplinary research for mediaX at Stanford University. With people and technology as the intersecting vectors in many media contexts, Dr. Russell has established collaborative research initiatives in ICT and technology leadership - for national agencies and for technology companies. She pioneered one of the first US public-private partnerships in microelectronic and information science and also in manufacturing technologies. With a focus on the power of shared vision, Dr. Russell has developed planning/evaluation systems and consulted regionally and internationally on technology innovation for regional development. Dr. Russell studies relationship systems - people to people, to their brands, to their organizations, and for innovation. Using data-driven visualizations, her recent studies have take innovation's pulse and tracked the evolution of innovation ecosystems in digital media, learning technologies, and sensors. She has applied insights about relational capital and decision analytics to corporate, regional and national challenges. Dr. Russell serves as an advisor to the Journal of Technology Forecasting and Social Change, the Journal of Enterprise Transformation and several startup companies.
  • Paul Saffo Paul Saffo is a Silicon Valley-based forecaster with three decades experience helping corporate and governmental clients understand and respond to the dynamics of large-scale, long-term change. He is a Distinguished Visiting Scholar with mediaX, teaches forecasting in the Engineering School at Stanford, and is chair of Future Studies at Singularity University. Saffo is also a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council, and a Fellow of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences. Saffo holds degrees from Harvard College, Cambridge University, and Stanford University.
  • Dan Schwartz

    Dan Schwartz is Dean of Stanford Graduate School of Education and an expert in human learning and educational technology. Schwartz oversees a laboratory whose computer-focused developments in science and math instruction permit original research into fundamental questions of learning. He has taught math in rural Kenya, English in south-central Los Angeles, and multiple subjects in Kaltag, Alaska. This diversity of experience informs his work. Among many honors, Schwartz was named Graduate School of Education Teacher of the Year for 2015. His latest book, The ABCs of How We Learn: 26 Scientifically Proven Approaches, How They Work and When to Use Them, distills learning theories into practical solutions for use at home or in the classroom. NPR noted the book among the "best reads" for 2016.

  • John Seely Brown John Seely Brown (JSB) was the Chief Scientist of Xerox Corporation until April 2002 as well as the director of the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) until June 2000. A master integrator and instigator of productive friction, JSB explores the whitespace between disciplines and builds bridges between disparate organizations and ideas. In his more than two decades at PARC, Brown transformed the organization into a truly multidisciplinary research center at the creative edge of applied technology and design, integrating social sciences and arts into the traditional physics and computer science research and expanding the role of corporate research to include topics such as the management of radical innovation, organizational learning, complex adaptive systems, and nano-technologies. JSB is currently a visiting scholar and advisor to the Provost at the University of Southern California (USC) where he facilitates collaboration between the schools for Communication and Media and the Institute for Creative Technologies (ICT). JSB is also the Independent Co-Chairman for Deloitte’s Center for the Edge where he pursues research on institutional innovation and a reimagined work environment built on digital culture, ubiquitous computing, and the need for constant learning and adaptability. His personal research interests include digital youth culture, digital media, and the application of technology to fundamentally rethink the nature of work and institutional architectures in order to enable deep learning across organizational boundaries – in brief, to design for emergence in a constantly changing world.
  • David Sirkin

    David Sirkin is a Research Associate at Stanford University’s Center for Design Research (CDR) and Lecturer in Electrical Engineering, where he teaches interactive device design. At CDR, Dr. Sirkin focuses on design methodology, as well as the design of physical interactions between humans and robots, and autonomous vehicles and their interfaces. Dr. Sirkin frequently collaborates with, and consults for, local Silicon Valley and global technology companies including Siemens, SAP and Microsoft Research.


  • Ryota Yamada

    Ryota Yamada is an Expert at the Open Innovation Initiative, Technology and Intellectual Property H.Q., OMRON Corporation. Mr. Yamada joined OMRON in 2002 as a Software Engineer. From 2003 to 2006, Mr. Yamada was a Visiting Researcher at mediaX at Stanford University, where he worked with Professor Cliff Nass on designing and implementing Socially Intelligent Agent technology, which improves human performance. After returning to Japan, he worked on the research and development of web communication systems for experts in factory and wireless sensor network systems. Mr. Yamada holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Engineering from the Nagoya Institute of Technology in Japan.


About this conference

Sense-Making & Making Sense

Technology augments our sense-making - helping us filter signals, manipulate data and create representations. How does the interactive human-machine sense-making process work? How might technology align with human scale, timing and representation to make it work better? How might human fundamentals help us create technologies that will enhance the human experience?

With digital tools, on April 20th, the #mediaX2017 Conference, "Sense-Making & Making Sense" delved into the human mind as a sense-making organ, keeping as context the whole body, the whole person, in community. The communication and social sciences are already in fast pursuit of key questions, fueled by massive data. The learning, cognitive and neurosciences are entering a period of accelerated development. Thought Leaders in these fields will showcase how each contributes a unique perspective and can propel you to new insights.

About mediaX at Stanford University

mediaX is a forum, an incubator of ideas, and a programmatic framework to support multi-disciplinary discovery relationships. Our initiatives explore how understanding people can improve the design of technologies – in the areas of learning, mobility, collaboration, entertainment and commerce.

As the industry affiliate program of the H-STAR Institute, mediaX programs are grounded on respect for different approaches to discovery and centered on our belief in the power of collaboration – between business and academic researchers, on campus and around the world.

For more information, visit: http://mediax.stanford.edu/