"Rise of the Robots" Author to Speak at Michigan Tech Saturday

Do robots want your job? Martin Ford, Silicon Valley entrepreneur and author of the New York Times best-selling book, "Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future," will answer that question when he presents a public lecture at the Rozsa Center at Michigan Technological University on Saturday (Sept. 23).

He will also present a program for students on emerging trends in robotics and artificial intelligence and one for faculty on artificial intelligence and industry trends.

The student program, "Pasties and Robots," is scheduled from noon to 1 p.m. Saturday on the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts stage. Ford will meet with interested students to answer questions about the field of robotics, entrepreneurship and what’s next in automation. Career Services will provide pasties. Space is limited, and students are asked to sign up in advance at the Career Services office, Administration Building 201.

From 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, faculty from across campus are invited to join Ford on the Rozsa Center stage for a discussion about emerging industry trends in robotics, artificial intelligence and the future of personalized learning. Coffee and light refreshments will be provided. 

Ford will give a public lecture at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Rozsa Center. His topic is “Disruptive Technology: Do Robots Want Your Job?” Admission is free. Before the lecture, at 5:30 p.m., copies of "Rise of the Robots" will be on sale in the Rozsa Lobby. Keweenaw FIRST Robotics robots will be on display and information on Career Services and University research will be available.

The lecture is free, however due to limited seating, tickets are required. For tickets please call 7-2073, online, or in person at the central ticket office in the Student Development Complex (SDC). Tickets are also available the night of the show at the Rozsa box office, which opens two hours prior to events.

After the 1-hour lecture, there will be a half-hour question and answer period live-streamed on Facebook. A book-signing in the Rozsa Lobby will follow the Q&A at 9 p.m.

Ford is the founder of a Silicon Valley-based software development firm and the author of two books: "Rise of the Robots" and "The Lights in the Tunnel: Automation, Accelerating Technology and the Economy of the Future."

Rise of the Robots received the Financial Times/McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award and was named one of Business Insider’s Best Business Books of the Year.

Ford has more than 25 years of experience in computer design and software development. He holds a computer engineering degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and a graduate business degree from UCLA. He has written for publications including Fortune, Forbes, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, Project Syndicate, The Huffington Post and The Fiscal Times.

He has also appeared on numerous radio and television shows, including programs on NPR and CNBC, and is scheduled to appear at this year’s TED 2017 conference.

Tomorrow is Manufacturing Day

Eleven innovative companies leading the market in product design, robotics and controls, advanced manufacturing, construction and building design, and sustainability are taking part in Michigan Tech's Manufacturing Day tomorrow (Sept 19).  

Miller Electric is bringing a 25-foot show trailer and will run live welding demonstrations throughout the event. Students will also have the opportunity to weld their own laser-cut souvenirs. 

If students are curious about manufacturing machine controls, Kimberly Clark is bringing two electrical control displays that mimic those used to drive manufacturing machines in their company—one with physical controls, buttons and knobs, and one with touchscreen controls.

Whirlpool has a UR5 collaborative robot, a thermal IR camera and virtual reality goggles that illuminate in-plant technologies and the sustainability work being developed. Systems Control also plans to have augmented reality glasses available to try.

Additionally, students will get a firsthand look at what companies like 3M, Plexus, Georgia-Pacific and Greenheck are currently working on and developing.   

In addition, there are five Enterprise Teams participating in Manufacturing Day; Velovations, Boardsport Technologies, Open Source Hardware Enterprise (OSHE) Wireless Communications and Innovative Global Solutions.

Manufacturing Day is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. tomorrow (Sept 19) in the center of Michigan Tech’s campus.  It is the second largest industry-sponsored event hosted by the University during CareerFEST, a series of informal events leading up to Fall Career Fair, Wednesday Sept. 27. 

"Daughter of the Lake" Film and Discussion, Wednesday

"Daughter of the Lake," a documentary about the human and environmental costs of gold mining and indigenous resistance in the Peruvian Andes, will be screened at 7 p.m. Wednesday (Sept. 20) in Fisher 135.

The film shows scenes from the lives and customs of the local population in the Peruvian Andes and the leading role of women in the defense of the environment. The events portrayed center around the resistance to the Conga mining project, a project managed by Yanacocha Mining Company, owned by Newmont Mining, headquartered in Denver and Buenaventura Mining in Peru.

Miguel Levy (Physics) says Yanacocha is guilty of serious environmental crimes, including water contamination affecting crops, livestock and drinking water of the native population. Protests against the Conga project started in 2011, including a regional work stoppage in 2012, peasant and student protest marches in 2013.

The director of this documentary, Ernesto Cabellos, will join us live for discussion via Skype from Lima, Peru, after the screening. A representative from the Menominee tribe in Michigan will also be joining us in the panel discussion.

The Menominee tribe is presently facing a fight against gold mining here in the Upper Peninsula. This event is sponsored by the Indigenous Peoples' Day Campaign.

Keweenaw Time Traveler to Kick off History Seminar

A presentation on the Keweenaw Time Traveler kicks off the Carnegie Museum Natural History Seminar 2017-2018. The presentation "Map Your History! Keweenaw Time Traveler" will take place beginning at 6:30 p.m. tomorrow (Sept. 19) at the museum in downtown Houghton. 

The Keweenaw Time Traveler is an online historical atlas that allows users to explore the history and heritage of the Copper Country. Don Lafreniere (SS) Robert Pastel (CS) and Sarah Scarlett (SS) will explain the Time Traveler and encourage citizens to get involved. They are seeking assistance from the public to help map, categorize, transcribe and explore the people, places, buildings and environments of the Copper Country's past.

The social and introductions begin at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday with the discussion and talk at 7 p.m.

Additional Health Screenings Tomorrow

If you were unable to make Thursday's Health Fair to get your health screenings done—no worries. The Exercise Assessment and Prescription class will offer screenings from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. tomorrow (Sept. 19) on the first floor of the SDC by the memorial/trophy rooms.
Screenings are free of charge and there is no need to register, just stop by. Screenings that will be performed include: body fat percentage, body mass index, blood pressure and waist to hip ratio.
If you have any questions, email Whitney Boroski.

Hockey Intrasquad Game, Skate With the Huskies Saturday

The Michigan Tech hockey team will play an intrasquad game on Saturday (Sept. 23) at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena. Puck drop is set for 6:30 p.m. and there will be Skate With The Huskies following the 30-minute game.

Admission for the game is $2 with all proceeds donated to the local youth hockey organizations. The 2017-18 team will split up and play two 15-minute halves.

The 97th season of Tech hockey begins Oct. 1 at the University of Wisconsin in the annual US Hockey Hall of Fame Game. Puck drop is set for 3 p.m. (EDT) at the Kohl Center. The first home games are set for Oct. 20-21 versus the University of Alabama in Huntsville.

Season tickets are on sale for $362 and include all 16 home games plus seven home playoff games. Season half pack tickets for Friday or Saturday only in the regular season are also available for $128. Visit BuyHuskiesTickets.com or call 7-2073 to purchase yours today.

Professional Development Program for Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Fellows

The Graduate School announces its Professional Development Program for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. The series is coordinated through the Graduate School with funding from NSF. 

The workshops are most appropriate for postdocs and third and fourth year PhD students, but all those interested may attend, space permitting.

The workshops will be held from 3-5 p.m. on designated Thursdays. Space is limited so register for each seminar online to reserve your seat and obtain the room location and a reminder prior to the event:

Topics covered include:

  • Sept. 21: Explore your career options and pathways

  • Oct. 19: Enhance and broaden your communication and interview skills

  • Nov. 9: Team skills

  • Jan. 25: Assuming leadership positions

  • March 1: Effective negotiation strategies

  • March 22: Sustainability/Ethical STEM culture and social innovation

  • April 12: Publishing research results in peer-reviewed journals

Additional information can be found on our blog.



Wicked Ambiguity Tonight

Michigan Tech alumnus Jonathon Colman, product usability and lead content strategist at Facebook, will deliver the talk "Wicked Ambiguity" at 7 p.m. tonight in Walker 134. Read the original Tech Today story.


Portrait Session Tomorrow

University Marketing and Communications will hold a portrait session from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. tomorrow (Sept. 19) on the ground floor of the Administration Building, room G35.


Calling All Communicators: Plain Language Workshop Tomorrow

"Speaking Your User's Language," an interactive workshop focusing on the benefits and challenges of communicating directly and authentically with your audience, will be presented by Nick Rosencrans, User Experience Analyst at the University of Minnesota, and self-described champion for the end user at 9:30-11 a.m. tomorrow (Sept. 19) in Walker 120A.


Materials Science & Engineering Seminar Tomorrow

Phil Maziasz, Distinguished Research Scientist and Battelle Distinguished Inventor at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, will present "Advanced Ni-based Superalloys for Advanced—UltraSuperCritical (A-USC) Steam Turbine Applications" at 11:00 am tomorrow (Sep. 19) in M&M 610.


Finding a Mentor Workshop Wednesday

Lorelle Meadows, dean of the Pavlis Honors College, will host an interactive discussion on how to find and approach a faculty member for an undergraduate research position. In addition, students will learn about paid research internship opportunities at Michigan Tech and beyond.

The workshop will take place from 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday (Sept. 20) in Library 243.


Interview Day

With Career Fair and Interview Days just around the corner, less than two weeks to go, Career Services is requesting donations of any available rooms on campus from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28. Any space that has or can fit a table and 2-3 chairs will do.

If you have space available and have not yet done so, let us know by filling out this form.


Weight Watchers at Work

Register here for the 12-week Weight Watchers at Work session, which begins at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 4 in 125 Fisher Hall for weigh-ins and 6 p.m. for the meeting.

Open to employees and retirees, participants must register online by Wednesday, Sept. 27. The fee for this 12-week session is $126.00 per participant and includes free access to Weight Watcher's premium "Online Plus" website.

Questions? Contact Shannon Brodeur or 7-1146. For more information, see the previous Tech Today article here.


In the News

The Daily Mining Gazette ran a feature on Michigan Tech hockey incoming freshman Justin Misiak. Read the full story.


Steve Patchin, director of career services at Michigan Tech, co-authored a Michigan Association of State Universities (MASU) blog post with Kerin Borland, career services director at the University of Michigan, about the value of career fairs to students and employers. See here.


Laura Kasson Fiss (Pavlis Honors College) and Andrew Fiss (HU) presented at the annual meeting of the British Science Association, now rebranded as the British Science Festival, the longest-running conference for science communication in Europe. On Friday (Sept. 8) they gave a lecture/performance "The Mathematikado," named for a 1886 parody of Gilbert & Sullivan's "Mikado" written and performed by students at the US women's college, Vassar College. Their work was covered by The Conversation UK in a podcast called the Anthill.


The two historic shipwrecks that Guy Meadows, Chris Pinnow and Jamey Anderson helped discover in Lake Huron have been widely covered in Michigan news. This includes Michigan Radio, Detroit news stations, UP Matters, Tech Century and Marine Technology News.


The international journal Science published an article about managing multigenerational research teams, quoting Joshua Pearce (MSE) and Adrienne Minerick (CoE). See here.


The Holland Sentinel, reporting on the Tulip City Gem and Mineral Club's annual rock, mineral and jewelry show, noted that Michigan Tech's A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum has lent the show its display, "How Geodes Are Made." It includes 10 museum-quality geodes from Mexico, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Kentucky and Argentina. See here.

IT Connect

Another Zoom Training

Zoom is our newest web conferencing solution for the campus community. This new tool, which replaces GoToMeeting, is an easy way to collaborate on and off campus with colleagues and students.

Michigan Tech IT will conduct another Zoom training session. A Zoom representative will cover all aspects of this new tool. Join us from 2 to 3 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28 in Fisher 138.

You may attend the web conference from your own computer at 2 p.m. by clicking here. This is limited to 500 online participants.

If you happen to miss it, this training will be recorded and made available soon. If you have any questions regarding Zoom or this scheduled web conference, contact us at it-help@mtu.edu.