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2018 Keynote Speakers
Award-winning Game Designer, Fulbright Scholar, Entrepreneur, Artist, Writer & Creative DirectorBrenda Romero is an award-winning game designer, Fulbright scholar, entrepreneur, artist, writer and creative director who entered the video game industry in 1981. Brenda has worked with a variety of digital game companies as a game designer, creative director or consultant, including Atari, Sir-tech Software, Electronic Arts and numerous companies in the social and mobile space. She is presently the Program Director of the MSc in Game Design & Development at Limerick University, Co-founder of independent game developer at Romero Games, Ltd in Galway, Ireland. Brenda has extensive experience in PC, console and casual gaming. In 2017, she was awarded the Development Legend award at the Develop conference in the UK. In 2015, she won the coveted Ambassador’s Award at the Game Developers Choice Awards. She is a 2014 Fulbright Scholar, and the recipient of the 2013 Women in Games Lifetime Achievement Award awarded by Microsoft. Romero was previously a nominee in Microsoft's 2010 Women in Games game design award. In 2013, she was listed as one of the industry's top 10 game developers by Gamasutra.com, along with the likes of industry giants Naughty Dog, Nintendo and Rockstar North. Develop magazine also listed her among the 25 people who changed games in 2013. Romero was also named one of Forbes' "12 Women in Gaming to Watch" in 2013, one of the top 20 most influential women in the game industry by Gamasutra.com in 2008 and one of the 100 most influential women in the game industry by Next Generation magazine in 2007. Nerve magazine also called her one of the 50 artists, actors, authors, activists and icons who are making the world a more stimulating place.
Executive Director, The Linux FoundationJim's career spans three of the largest technology trends to rise over the last decade: mobile computing, cloud computing and open source software. Today, as executive director of The Linux Foundation, he uses this experience to accelerate innovation in technology through the use of open source and Linux. At The Linux Foundation, Jim works with the world’s largest technology companies, including IBM, Intel, Google, Samsung, Qualcomm, and others to help define the future of computing on the server, in the cloud, and on a variety of new mobile computing devices. His work at the vendor-neutral Linux Foundation gives him a unique and aggregate perspective on the global technology industry. Jim has been recognized for his insights on the changing economics of the technology industry. His writing has appeared in Businessweek, Wired, and other top technology journals, and he is a regular keynote speaker at industry events. He advises a variety of startups, including Splashtop, and sits on the boards of the Global Economic Symposium, Open Source For America, and Chinese Open Source Promotion Union.
Director of Research, Human Rights Data Analysis GroupPatrick Ball has spent more than twenty years conducting quantitative analysis for truth commissions, non-governmental organizations, international criminal tribunals, and United Nations missions in El Salvador, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Haiti, South Africa, Chad, Sri Lanka, East Timor, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Kosovo, Liberia, Perú, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Syria. Patrick began working in the human rights field in El Salvador in 1991. From 1993 to 2003, he worked in several capacities in the Science and Human Rights Program at the American Association for the Advancement of Science, where he began recruiting colleagues to build HRDAG. From 2003 to 2013 he continued to develop HRDAG from within Benetech, a nonprofit technology company in Silicon Valley. From 2013 through 2015, Patrick was Executive Director of HRDAG; on December 1, 2015, he became the Director of Research. Patrick provided testimony in two cases at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, the first in the trial of Slobodan Milošević, the former President of Serbia. He provided technical advice to the Special Court in Sierra Leone and the International Criminal Court. In 2013 he provided expert testimony in Guatemala’s Supreme Court in the trial of General José Efraín Ríos Montt, the de-facto president of Guatemala in 1982-1983. Gen. Ríos was found guilty of genocide and crimes against humanity; it was the first time ever that a former head of state was found guilty of genocide in his own country.
In September 2015, Patrick provided expert testimony in the trial of former President of Chad, Hissène Habré. HRDAG’s analysis showed that the death rate for political prisoners was much higher than for adult men in Chad: 90 to 540 times higher. On its worst day in the time period for which data were analyzed, the mortality rate was 2.37 deaths per 100 prisoners. During a nine-month period in 1986-1987, the mortality rate in Habré’s prisons was higher than that of US POWs in Japanese custody during World War II.In 2015, the Claremont Graduate University awarded Patrick a Doctor of Science (honoris causa). In 2014, Patrick was elected a Fellow of the American Statistical Association. In 2005, the Electronic Frontier Foundation awarded Patrick with their Pioneer Award. In June 2004, the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) gave him the Eugene Lawler Award for Humanitarian Contributions within Computer Science and Informatics, and in 2002, he received a Special Achievement Award from the Social Statistics Section of the American Statistical Association. He is on the Advisory Council of Security Force Monitor, aa project of the Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute ; a Fellow at the Human Rights Center at Berkeley Law of the University of California-Berkeley; and a Research Fellow at Carnegie Mellon’s Center for Human Rights Science. He has been profiled by The New York Times Magazine, Wired, Foreign Policy, Salon.com, and the Christian Science Monitor, and he has been featured in a PBS film.
Co-Founder, Chief Science Officer, Vibrant Data Inc.Eric Berlow is an ecologist and network scientist who co-founded Vibrant Data, a data science and data visualization company that was acquired by Rakuten Inc. Berlow is internationally recognized for his research on ecological complexity – with articles in Nature, Science, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that have received Thomson Reuter’s Most Highly Cited Papers awards. His two talks on TED.com on finding hidden patterns in complex data have received over 2 million views. Prior to Vibrant Data, Berlow was the director of the University of California’s first science institute inside Yosemite National Park, which focused on facilitating data-driven decisions for protecting natural ecosystems. Berlow has received a TED Fellowship, a TED Senior Fellowship, an Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship, and a National Science Foundation Post-Doctoral Fellowship. He was named one of the Top 100 Creatives by Origin Magazine. Berlow holds a B.A. in Biology from Brown University and a Ph.D. in Ecology from Oregon State University.
Program Director of Developer Technology and Advocacy, IBMJohanna Koester, Program Director of Developer Technology and Advocacy at IBM, leads a global team with responsibility for unleashing the best of open technology to today’s developers through digital and face to face events. Over the past 10 years, she has had the distinct honor of leading IBM’s project office responsible for founding and sponsoring many strategic open source communities including the OpenStack Foundation, Cloud Foundry Foundation, Node.js Foundation, Cloud Native Computing Foundation, ODPi and more. In this role, she has been an outspoken advocate for open technologies to foster the development of the next generation of Cloud and AI Technology to drive interoperability and speed of innovation for industry developers. Through her involvement in these communities, she always carves out time to advocate for diversity in open source communities including leadership roles in the Women of OpenStack committee and Cloud Foundry Ambassadors. She holds a BS and Computer Science and Math from Tulane University and an MBA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. You can find more background information as well as her views on developer and open technologies on Twitter @jokoester.
President & CEO, Mifos InitiativeEd has been a part of the Mifos project since 2007 in its early days at Grameen Foundation. He oversaw the open source community, connecting its members worldwide with the tools, support, and engagement needed to build and use Mifos. Leading the growth of this burgeoning community, he saw the dedication and persistence of its members and decided to found COSM (now the Mifos Initiative) to unite their efforts and help them collectively fulfill the vision Grameen Foundation set out to achieve. Prior to this, he graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania where he led marketing for the nation’s largest student-run credit union and discovered his passion for technology-driven international development in their budding social entrepreneurship program. When he’s not watching over the Mifos community, he’s tending to another community of sorts, his mini-farmhouse of animals – chickens, bunnies, dogs, goats, cats, birds, and fish.
Author, Kernel Developer and Executive Editor of LWN.netJonathan Corbet is the executive editor at LWN.net. He is the maintainer of the kernel's documentation subsystem, a member of the Linux Foundation's Technical Advisory Board, and a frequent speaker at community events worldwide.
Arjan van de Ven
Intel Fellow & Director of Linux Systems Engineering, Open Source Technology Center, IntelArjan van de Ven is an Intel Fellow as well as director of Linux Systems Engineering in the Open Source Technology Center at Intel Corporation. Arjan’s passion is addressing the seemingly impossible through technical innovation, such as Clear Containers with Intel® Virtualization Technology and the Clear Linux OS. He is a key contributor to silicon architecture and helps Intel business groups define future processor/platform features. Arjan is a frequent speaker at open source conferences and often presents Intel Linux and open source strategy with analysts. He’s has been granted 21 patents and holds dual master’s degrees: business administration from Tilburg University-TIAS Business School and electrotechnical engineering from Eindhoven University.
Gravitational-wave Researcher, Max Planck Institute for Gravitational PhysicsAlex Nitz is a gravitational-wave researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics in Hannover, Germany, and member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration. He studies the mergers of neutron stars and black holes and is lead developer of PyCBC, which is an open source python library used by LIGO and Virgo to search for and understand gravitational waves from compact binary mergers.