Heather Knight, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Robotics at Oregon State University, founder of Marilyn Monrobot
Perhaps best known for her popular TED Talk, Knight brings Data, the world’s first robotic jokester, to the “Rise Up, Robots!” stage. Knight will explain how she injects charisma into her creation, and give a live demonstration of Data’s interactive quips. Among her accolades, Knight has graced the cover of Wired UK magazine and was named to the 2011 Forbes List for 30 under 30 in Science – and she also helped create the Rube Goldberg device for OK Go’s This Too Shall Pass music video. Her current research involves human-robot interaction, non-verbal machine communications, and non-anthropomorphic social robots.
Gil Weinberg, Ph.D.
Professor and Founding Director of Georgia Tech Center for Music Technology
Yep, robots rock. Weinberg proves the point in the literal sense with Shimon, Georgia Tech’s marimba playing robotic musician. Shimon, seen on NBC’s “Today” show, uses machine learning for jazz improvisation, and Weinberg will show the “Rise Up, Robots!” audience how it’s done. Weinberg’s other projects include a prosthetic robotic arm, which restores and enhances human drumming abilities for amputees. He’s presented his work worldwide at venues such as The Kennedy Center and the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, and for the TED-Ed online lesson series. Weinberg’s research focuses on developing artificial creativity and musical expression for robots and augmented humans. This act is presented in collaboration with the Atlanta Jewish Music Festival.
Stewart Coulter, Ph.D.
Engineering Manager at DEKA Research & Development
A prosthetic, bionic arm with a hand that can pinch, grip, and conform to the objects it holds? Sounds like science fiction, but it’s science fact. Just ask Coulter. The LUKE arm can do all of that and more. Coulter served as the project manager for the LUKE arm, which stands for Life Under Kinetic Evolution. At “Rise Up, Robots!,” Coulter will give a demonstration and provide live evidence of how it changed someone’s life.
Emcee: Katie Walls, MS
Meteorologist at WSB-TV Atlanta
Katie Walls joined Severe Weather Team 2 in June 2014. Prior to joining WSB-TV, Katie worked in southwest Florida at WINK and in southern Illinois at WSIL, where she met her husband, Ryan. The couple welcomed their son, Kenneth, in December 2016. Graduating Phi Beta Kappa, Katie received her Bachelor of Science degree in Meteorology from Florida State University in 2007. (During her tenure at FSU, she performed in the Florida State Flying High Circus!) After her stint in Tallahassee, she attended Penn State University for her Master of Science degree in Meteorology and focused her thesis on flooding. While at PSU she honed her forecasting skills and was one of the meteorologists on the state-wide show, Weather World. Born and raised in wild and wonderful West Virginia, Katie has always had a passion for weather. She remembers crippling blizzards and devastating floods in her hometown of Lewisburg. Her drive to understand the science behind the weather led to a career in meteorology. In 2010 Katie was awarded the prestigious Certified Broadcast Meteorologist designation by the American Meteorological Society. This award is given to degreed meteorologists who exhibit extensive weather knowledge and communication skills. Katie enjoys traveling and spending time outdoors with her family.
Robot Petting Zoo
Join us in the lobby from 6pm-7pm to meet R2-D2 (boop beep!), race Sphero through a maze, avoid a snake bot, and chat with a Zeus, a full-size humanoid droid. Meet the bots and their creators from Georgia Tech, R2 Builders Club, STE(A)M Truck, and IEEE.