Welcome!

News Feed Item

DARPA Hosts 87 Fellows in Unprecedented Gathering: Event Generates Rich Discussions, Exercises and Presentations on DARPA Process for Problem-Solving

Pilot Experiment May Lead to Regular Sessions at Six-Month Intervals

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - January 23, 2014) - The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, (DARPA), considered to be the nation's official "innovation engine," recently hosted Hertz Fellows for a first-of-its-kind event near DARPA headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. During two full days, January 10-11, Fellows learned how the agency poses and solves problems. They engaged interactively with DARPA leaders, working on an opportunity and risk assessment, sharing projections of where their research might evolve for both positive and/or negative outcomes.

"This was an important, productive meeting on many levels," said Randy Garrett, PhD, program manager of the DARPA Information Innovation Office, (I2O). "In a single setting, we shared our approach and mission with the Fellows. They in turn brought value to us. Their energy and creativity is exactly what's needed to solve our biggest problems." The I2O was structural host for the event. Hertz Fellow Jennifer Roberts organized the event and its program.

Roberts had invited Garrett to last summer's 50th Anniversary Symposium. He asked Hertz Foundation president, Jay Davis how DARPA might gain closer access to the Hertz Fellow Community. The two agreed to pursue an event to bring Hertz Fellows together with DARPA. An open invitation was extended to Hertz Fellows from a broad spectrum of disciplines, including physics, bioscience, engineering, chemistry, computer science, neuroscience, mathematics and materials science.

Friday's program began with talks from DARPA program managers, as well as the Agency Director, Arati Prabhakar, PhD. Prabhakar spoke about how DARPA invests in world-class engineers and scientists to create new technologies and businesses. She and the other managers told how the Agency's scientific investigations span the gamut from laboratory efforts to the creation of full-scale technology demonstrations. Though finite in duration, projects create lasting, revolutionary change.

David Kilcullen, an Australian author working with DARPA, described the growing global problem written about in his book, "Out of the Mountains." Kilcullen shared the book's three-point thesis:

1) Population growth is littoral. Huge cities along continental coastlines are growing together across city boundaries and even across national boundaries.

2) Cities are surrounded by slums because they can't absorb people at the rate that they come in. They can't provide rule of law in the slums, so gangs provide security and revenge for victims as a form of justice. Cities are less and less able to control their own futures.

3) Though without clean water, good health care, sanitary services or reliable police, slum dwellers have connectivity with one another. They can be mobilized very quickly.

Fellows finished the first day with a DARPA exercise in groups of four to complete in rapid succession each part of a four-part cycle, pertaining to Kilcullen's book:

1) Individually in four minutes: What are the principal problems? As a group in eight minutes: Which problem is most important to tackle?

2) Individually in four minutes: What are the technical solutions that might be produced to tackle the selected problem? As a group in eight minutes: What is the most important technical solution?

3) Individually in four minutes: What is the technological breakthrough required for the technical solution? As a group in eight minutes: Which breakthrough is most worthy of pursuit?

4) Individually, in four minutes: What parallel sociological changes are needed to make the solution possible and what obstacles are in play? What good results or what bad results would come from this change? Whose domain would be upset by this solution?

Each group chose a separate solution that also came with economic incentives.

Saturday started with the same groups of four, moving later into clusters of eight. Each Fellow developed technologies from his or her own research to attack specific societal or security problems. Each Fellow explained what technology breakthroughs were needed, what could actually be built, as well as what good and bad outcome might occur. Each group selected two ideas and prepared briefings on these. At the end of the day, the groups briefed their ideas to senior DARPA managers and to the room for critique. On Monday, January 13th, an evaluation of the process and most noteworthy ideas were briefed to Director Prabhakar. To the surprise of some, the final portfolio was heavily weighted to health and the life sciences.

"We're delighted at how this event unfolded," said Davis. "Just as we have tried to build the Hertz Fellows into an internal community, we are now exposing them into the larger community, making that larger community part of what we do."

A future event may take place within the next six months, focusing on one topic such as, cyber terrorism; flow and control of aircraft structures in hypersonic flight; or the future of sonar. "We have an opportunity to call on the Hertz Fellows more narrowly, now that the mechanism is understood," said Garrett. "This mechanism also gives us exposure to men and women early in career who could solve DARPA problems, who might be beneficial to our recruiting cycles and who enrich the outcomes in our mission on behalf of the Department of Defense."

Celebrating more than half a century of the Hertz Fellowship, the Hertz Foundation has fostered the scientific and engineering strength of the nation by finding the best and brightest students from those disciplines. During the past decade of applications, there has been a major shift of the candidates towards those who apply physical and computational tools to the problems of biomedicine and health. Significantly, another shift of the Hertz Foundation has been to support Hertz Fellows to build the vibrant Hertz Fellows Community. All ages gather in annual workshops and retreats to inspire one another and collaborate across generations and disciplines for innovation that further augments their powerful contribution. Hertz Fellows pursue their own ideas with complete financial independence, under the guidance of some of the country's finest professors and mentors. Fellows are chosen for their intellect, their ingenuity and their potential to bring meaningful improvement to society. The highly competitive selection process includes a comprehensive written application, four references, and two rounds of technical interviews by recognized leaders in applied physical, biological and engineering sciences. We seek applicants with exceptional personal creativity and great promise for innovative research. Throughout five decades, their impact has fulfilled that promise. They are the leaders who produce advances in science, medicine, technology, business, academia and government.

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

Latest Stories
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
Developing software for the Internet of Things (IoT) comes with its own set of challenges. Security, privacy, and unified standards are a few key issues. In addition, each IoT product is comprised of (at least) three separate application components: the software embedded in the device, the back-end service, and the mobile application for the end user’s controls. Each component is developed by a different team, using different technologies and practices, and deployed to a different stack/target –...
What does it look like when you have access to cloud infrastructure and platform under the same roof? Let’s talk about the different layers of Technology as a Service: who cares, what runs where, and how does it all fit together. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Lead Technology Evangelist at SoftLayer, an IBM company, spoke about the picture being painted by IBM Cloud and how the tools being crafted can help fill the gaps in your IT infrastructure.
One of biggest questions about Big Data is “How do we harness all that information for business use quickly and effectively?” Geographic Information Systems (GIS) or spatial technology is about more than making maps, but adding critical context and meaning to data of all types, coming from all different channels – even sensors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, William (Bill) Meehan, director of utility solutions for Esri, will take a closer look at the current state of spatial technology and ar...
According to Forrester Research, every business will become either a digital predator or digital prey by 2020. To avoid demise, organizations must rapidly create new sources of value in their end-to-end customer experiences. True digital predators also must break down information and process silos and extend digital transformation initiatives to empower employees with the digital resources needed to win, serve, and retain customers.
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Ask someone to architect an Internet of Things (IoT) solution and you are guaranteed to see a reference to the cloud. This would lead you to believe that IoT requires the cloud to exist. However, there are many IoT use cases where the cloud is not feasible or desirable. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dave McCarthy, Director of Products at Bsquare Corporation, will discuss the strategies that exist to extend intelligence directly to IoT devices and sensors, freeing them from the constraints of ...
Let’s face it, embracing new storage technologies, capabilities and upgrading to new hardware often adds complexity and increases costs. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Seth Oxenhorn, Vice President of Business Development & Alliances at FalconStor, discussed how a truly heterogeneous software-defined storage approach can add value to legacy platforms and heterogeneous environments. The result reduces complexity, significantly lowers cost, and provides IT organizations with improved efficienc...
Businesses are struggling to manage the information flow and interactions between all of these new devices and things jumping on their network, and the apps and IT systems they control. The data businesses gather is only helpful if they can do something with it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Witeck, Principal Technology Strategist at Citrix, will discuss how different the impact of IoT will be for large businesses, expanding how IoT will allow large organizations to make their legacy ap...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Complete Internet of Things (IoT) embedded device security is not just about the device but involves the entire product’s identity, data and control integrity, and services traversing the cloud. A device can no longer be looked at as an island; it is a part of a system. In fact, given the cross-domain interactions enabled by IoT it could be a part of many systems. Also, depending on where the device is deployed, for example, in the office building versus a factory floor or oil field, security ha...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CDS Global Cloud, an Infrastructure as a Service provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CDS Global Cloud is an IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) provider specializing in solutions for e-commerce, internet gaming, online education and other internet applications. With a growing number of data centers and network points around the world, ...
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lea...
24Notion is full-service global creative digital marketing, technology and lifestyle agency that combines strategic ideas with customized tactical execution. With a broad understand of the art of traditional marketing, new media, communications and social influence, 24Notion uniquely understands how to connect your brand strategy with the right consumer. 24Notion ranked #12 on Corporate Social Responsibility - Book of List.
Why do your mobile transformations need to happen today? Mobile is the strategy that enterprise transformation centers on to drive customer engagement. In his general session at @ThingsExpo, Roger Woods, Director, Mobile Product & Strategy – Adobe Marketing Cloud, covered key IoT and mobile trends that are forcing mobile transformation, key components of a solid mobile strategy and explored how brands are effectively driving mobile change throughout the enterprise.