diTHINK 2016 Agenda

What is diTHINK about?

It’s easier to harness digital tools today than ever before.  You can track everything from your schedule to your real-time research data, or even your most intimate health details through mobile apps or even your clothing. You can access and share your office files anywhere, automatically adjust your learning experience, and before you know it, you might even be ordering your next meal from a 3D-printer with ingredients specialized for your diet.

Welcome to the democratization of tech, where consumer devices have technology that pack a punch more powerful than the super computers of just 10 years ago. It’s empowering the individual to select, customize, utilize and control their own digital tools with little technical expertise and even less investment. DIYers can set up their own collaboration systems, undertake advanced computing analysis of crowd-sourced data, and create monitoring devices tailored to their community’s needs. Tech goes selfie for an inclusive future.

This year, we ask you to THINK about how the technology-enabled citizen is already impacting your institutions today and the possibilities that this ever-growing wave of innovation could have on the way we learn, work and play. Speaker presentations will inspire us around the possibilities as well as explore the fundamental challenges, while breakout sessions will allow you to shape the way we meet these challenges within particular sectors.

8:00am – Registration and breakfast networking

Advanced computing poster presentations will be exhibited throughout the day.

9:00 – Opening remarks

9:15 Ontario digital infrastructure update: Alfonso Licata and Nizar Ladak

9:30 – diConnectivity

Connectivity for the Innovation Economy. What is the role of our institutions in the Culture of Me? How do our public entities engage, how can we be more inclusive and customize solutions that meet the needs of users? Our panel of experts from research, education, and modern communities will discuss how they are grappling with these issues, how connectivity is key to enabling democratic innovation, and what we have to look forward to.

10:15 – Break

10:30 – Breakouts by streams

Choose a breakout session and find out how learning, research and our local economies are being transformed by the digitally empowered individual. Find your role in driving democratic innovation forward.

  • diLearn – Customized learning is at the forefront of edtech innovation. Karen Louise Smith will discuss youth digital literacy, participation, and the maker movement, while Elizabeth D. Steiner, co-author of the RAND report, Continued Progress: Promising Evidence on Personalized Learning, will elaborate on the findings of the report and what that means for education and technology. Rhonda McEwen will join the panel by bringing her insight into how new media provides accessibility to learners with special needs. Polly van Herpt will offer an on-the-ground perspective on how technology enables student learning. Joseph Wilson, director of business development at Spongelab Interactive, an education technology company, and a veteran in Ontario’s edtech space, will be moderating the panel.
  • diEconomy – Intelligent Communities are connected communities and they’re proven to boost the economy. Digital infrastructure enables the individual citizen to participate and contribute, sparking innovation. But it also enables regional governments to collect and analyze data, and customize services based on evidence. Featuring Henrik Bechmann from Civic Tech Toronto and Joy Henderson from Cityzeen, discover the critical relationship between municipal collaboration and digital infrastructure. Andriy Miranskyy, a research professor at Ryerson University will also share groundbreaking research about big data analytics, specifically applied to detecting malicious data attacks on the smart grid. Karen Dubeau, director of partner engagement for ventureLAB, will be moderating the panel.
  • diComputing/CORDHear the advanced computing contributed presentations from Ontario’s research community. As part of Compute Ontario’s Research Day (CORD) programming, you’ll meet with top minds from the field during presentations and poster sessions:
    • Evaluation of Radiation Treatment Plan using Big Data and Cloud Computing by James Chow, University of Toronto
    • Hardware Accelerators for Deep Learning by Graham Taylor, University of Guelph
    • Monte Carlo AIXI Parallel MPI Approximation by David Rusu, Robert Morouney and Vaughan Hilts, Wilfrid Laurier University
    • Compute Ontario’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Nizar Ladak, will address the road map, capacity, and call for provincial collaboration across advanced research community, in order to lead research and enable Ontario’s competitiveness in the global marketplace.

11:30 – Lunch and Leadership Awards ceremony

Be the first to know who will take home the K-12, Higher Education, and Innovation prizes for the 2016 Leadership Awards.

1:00pm – diFuture 

Wearing the Future. Preview the latest devices and wearables from Ontario’s innovators on our technology catwalk. Curated by Jutta Treviranus, OCAD’s inclusive design expert, this will be a fashion show unlike anything you’ve seen.

1:45 – Keynote: Ted Graham

Every attendee will receive a copy of keynote speaker Ted Graham‘s ground-breaking book,The Uber of Everything. If you think that Uber is just a concept for taxis, think again: expect to have boundaries bent as you discover why disruption has become such an innovation buzzword.

2:30 – Break

2:45 – Breakouts

  • Speed Workshopping – Fast-paced group technology problem-solving workshops
  • diComputing/CORD – Hear the advanced computing contributed presentations from Ontario’s research community. As part of Compute Ontario’s Research Day programming, you’ll meet with top minds from the field during presentations and poster sessions:
    • Precursor Effects on the Structure and Properties of Polymer Networks Synthesized using Molecular Dynamics by Shimiao Zhang, McMaster University
    • An Analysis of Bitcoin, and Its Impact on Global Finance by Jonathan Gillett, University of Ontario Institute of Technology
    • Using the Julia Programming Language for High-performance Computing by Erik Schnetter, Perimeter Institute

4:00 – 5:00 – Networking reception, brought to you by NewMakeIt

Conference agendas and reports from previous years

THINK 2015 – Create Possibilities
THINK 2014 – THINKforward
THINK 2013 – Extreme Data