#ConnectWeek2018 — Bring Your Curiosity
Our 6th annual Connect Week was the biggest one yet. From October 20 to 28, there were over 100 events covering four tracks: Art + Design, Science + Astronomy, Technology and Entrepreneurship.
This year, Innovate Pasadena kicked off its first installation of Big Ideas, an event series of talks with thought leaders, entrepreneurs and creatives held at locations around Pasadena. Julie Schoenfeld, Vice President, General Motors Cruise Automation, joined Alex Maleki at Caltech to discuss social entrepreneurship and what to expect for autonomous vehicles industry.
One of the recurring themes throughout Connect Week was the exploration into virtual reality (VR) and artificial intelligence (AI). Ayzenberg sp[a]ce gallery hosted VR demos with various artists. AI.LA had a great panel discussion on AI and Society: Creating a Fair and Ethical Future. Academic experts and industry leaders discussed case studies and answered questions about accountability, transparency, and ethics around AI in our daily lives.
There were also several hands-on workshops hosted at Supplyframe DesignLab where attendees learned how to do CNC fabrication, programmed a LoRa-connected sensor device with Christopher Dro and built photo frames with a table saw.
For the Science track, Pasadena Bio Collaborator Incubator had an open house and Dr. Riccardo DeSalvo led a talk on Gravity Waves. Huntington Medical Research Institute’s Beating Hearts & Thinking Brains: A Connection between Heart & Brain Disease where Dr. Robert Kloner, Chief Scientist and Director, Cardiovascular Research, and Dr. Michael Harrington, Director, Neuroscience Research connected the dots between brain and heart disease. The Arboretum joined Connect Week and gave a talk on The Re-Generation of Gardens, a concept of planting climate-appropriate plants and creating waterwise gardens.
There were several networking events, talks and resources for entrepreneurs. Pasadena Chamber of Commerce hosted Business and Economic Summit where local business and industry leaders discussed about the impacts of technology, healthcare and the arts on Pasadena. Goldstar CEO Jim McCarthy invited both current and potential entrepreneurs to his Entrepreneurs’ Masterminds Meetup to exchange ideas and resources. At Friday Coffee Meetup, Shaun Arora shared different ways to fund hardware startups during Lies and Hardware Startups at Cross Campus.
Design Driven Ventures, hosted by Design X, showcased five different presentations and case studies, which attendees learned how to identify best design driven ventures and evaluate their probability of success. UX Research Night gave attendees opportunity to use customer research to build the best products. ArtCenter celebrated the 70th anniversary of its Transportation Design program at the annual Car Classic.
That’s not all. Youths and families had opportunity to explore their curiosity. A bubbleologist showed the big, small, and odd shaped bubbles during Bubblemania. STEAM:CODERS had several classes and workshops like LilyPad Arduino Robotics for girls and Family Code Night. Robot Open Build at Kidspace Museum allowed children to get creative with their robots. Caltechmakers Family Hackathon showed that with a little creativity, a transformer costume can be built with cardboard boxes.