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Innovation Square

Saturday, June 2, 2012
12:00 pm - 7:00 pm

The World Science Festival transforms a picturesque quad in downtown Brooklyn into a staging ground for future-shaping innovations springing to life in labs and workshops around the world. Watch the first public demonstration of quantum levitation; get lost in the robot petting zoo; play with the world’s lightest material. It’s an unforgettable afternoon of amazing demos, challenges, and interactive fun, suitable for tech enthusiasts of all ages.


Apoorv AgarwalDoctoral Student

Apoorv Agarwal is a fourth year doctoral student in the Computer Science department at Columbia University, New York City. His areas of interest and specialization are Natural Language Processing and Machine Learning.

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BabycastlesVideo Game Research Collective

The Babycastles story has been one of opening new cultural territory for independent video games by inserting them aggressively into new spaces. This includes DIY punk-houses, Brooklyn music culture, art galleries, wearable games dance parties, and the Museum of Modern Art.

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Boaz AlmogPhysicist

Boaz Almog studies superconductors—materials with no electrical resistance—and their applications at Tel-Aviv University in Israel. By using exceptional superconductors, Boaz and his colleague Mishael Azoulay recently succeeded in demonstrating a phenomenon called “quantum levitation”: They trapped a superconductor disc in a powerful magnetic field, causing the disc to float uncannily in midair.

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Andrew BlumAuthor

Andrew Blum is the author of Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet, the first book-length look at the physical heart of the Internet itself. When not immersed in the Internet’s depths, Blum writes about architecture, design, technology, urbanism, art, and travel.

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Howie ChosetProfessor of Robotics at Carnegie Mellon

Howie Choset is a professor of robotics at Carnegie Mellon University. Motivated by applications in confined spaces, Choset has created a comprehensive program in snake robots, which has led to basic research in mechanism design, path planning, motion planning, and estimation.

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Dickson DespommierMedical Ecologist

Dickson Despommier is a trailblazer, devising solutions to problems in agriculture and public health that likely will be magnified by climate change. A microbiologist, he is a Professor of Public Health at Columbia University’s Mailman School, where he developed the idea of growing food in urban farm skyscrapers.

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Peter EdwardsArtist, Experimental Musician

Peter Edwards is an American artist, musician, and teacher. He has been exploring the field of circuit bending and musical electronics since 2000 through his business Casperelectronics. He performs regularly under the same name.

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Heinrich FrontzekHead of Corporate Communications

Heinrich Frontzek has more than 15 years of experience in corporate communication of innovation, technology, education and knowledge in engineering industrial companies.

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Robert J. FullProfessor of Integrative Biology

Robert J. Full is a Chancellor’s and Goldman Professor of Integrative Biology at the University of California at Berkeley. Professor Full completed his undergraduate, master and PhD studies at SUNY Buffalo.

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Eitan GrinspunAssociate Professor of Computer Science

Eitan Grinspun is associate professor of computer science at Columbia University, and Director of the Columbia Computer Graphics Group. His research seeks to discover connections between geometry, physics, and computation.

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Dennis HongRoboticist, Engineer

Dennis Hong, a TED alumnus, is an associate professor and the founding director of RoMeLa (Robotics & Mechanisms Laboratory) of the Mechanical Engineering Department at Virginia Tech.

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Don IngberCell Biologist

Don Ingber is Founding Director of the Wyss Institute and a leader in the emerging field of biologically inspired engineering. He oversees a multifaceted effort to identify the mechanisms that living organisms use to self assemble and to apply these design principles to develop advanced materials and devices.

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Katherine IsbisterComputer Scientist

Katherine Isbister has a joint appointment between the NYU-Poly computer science department and the NYU Game Center. Isbister is research director of the Game Innovation Lab at NYU-Poly, and an investigator in the NYU Games for Learning Institute.

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Alan JacobsenMaterial Scientist

Alan Jacobsen is a senior scientist at HRL Laboratories in Malibu, CA. He is the inventor and lead developer of a new technique to fabricate microlattice materials based on a self-propagating optical waveguide phenomenon.

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Ellen JorgensenMolecular Biologist

Ellen Jorgensen is a molecular biologist and a passionate advocate of citizen science. Her research interests have encompassed such diverse areas as free radicals in disease, DNA fingerprinting, virus protein structure/function relationships, and cancer biomarkers.

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Oliver MedvedikProfessor, Founder of Genspace

Oliver Medvedik earned his Ph.D. at Harvard Medical School, in the Biomedical and Biological Sciences program. As part of his doctoral work he has used single-celled budding yeast as a model system to map the genetic pathways that underlie the processes of aging in more complex organisms, such as humans.

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Vinod MenonAssociate Professor of Physics at CUNY

Vinod Menon is an Associate Professor of Physics at the City University of New York (CUNY) – Queens College and Graduate Center. He joined CUNY as part of the Photonic Initiative in 2004. Prior to joining CUNY he was a research staff member at Princeton University (2003-04).

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Jin MontclareChemical and Biomedical Engineer

Jin Kim Montclare is an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, who is performing groundbreaking research in engineering proteins to mimic nature and, in some cases, work better than nature.

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David NgScience Educator

David Ng is a faculty researcher at the University of British Columbia’s Michael Smith Laboratories, where he heads a science education lab aimed at training researchers, engaging students in the life sciences, and informing the public on the societal, political, economic and ethical nuances of the sciences.

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Tristan PerichExperimental Composer

Tristan Perich’s work is inspired by the aesthetic simplicity of math, physics and code. WIRE magazine describes his compositions as “an austere meeting of electronic and organic.”

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Syed SalahuddinCo-founder of Babycastles

As a former student of NYU’s ITP program, Syed Salahuddin has been involved in various transmedia projects that explore relationships and create dialogues between humans and machines.

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Caitlin TrainorDancer, Choreographer

Caitlin Trainor is the artistic director of Trainor Dance and a lecturer at Barnard College/Columbia University. Originally from Rhode Island, Trainor has taught, choreographed, and performed on both sides of the Atlantic.

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Philip WhiteExperimental Musician

Philip White’s performances center on a non-linear feedback system, which consists of a mixer and several homemade circuits. In addition to his work with analog and digital electronics, White has written extensively for chamber ensembles and created a large body of intermedia pieces.

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