Our experts discuss the current state of life extension and gene therapy technologies, the newest findings by academia and other organizations, and the controversy surrounding the use of these technologies.
Join us for a special presentation from DARPA Biological Technologies Office Director Justin Sanchez. From programmable microbes to human-machine symbiosis, biological technologies are expanding our definition of technology and redefining how we interact with and use biology.
The Biological Technology Office (BTO) is DARPA’s technology arm focused on leveraging advances in engineering and information sciences to drive and reshape biotechnology for technological advantage. BTO is responsible for all neurotechnology, human-machine interface, human performance, infectious disease, and synthetic biology programs within the agency.
BTO is bringing together leading-edge technologists, researchers, start-ups, and industry to solve problems that matter and drive technological revolution.
Before coming to DARPA, Dr. Sanchez was an Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience at the University of Miami, and a faculty member of the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. He directed the Neuroprosthetics Research Group, where he oversaw development of neural-interface medical treatments and neurotechnology for treating paralysis and stroke, and for deep brain stimulation for movement disorders, Tourette’s syndrome and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.
Dr. Sanchez holds Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Engineering degrees in Biomedical Engineering, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Science, all from the University of Florida.
Stelarc presents on his life’s work and discusses his exploration of alternate anatomical architectures, exploring issues of agency, identity and the posthuman through his performance art. His vast repertoire includes suspension, performances with a Third Hand and a Prosthetic Head, or even entire exoskeletons. He has explored allowing others to control his body remotely and in one recent performance saw with the eyes of someone in London while hearing with the ears of someone in New York. In Ear On Arm, he is surgically constructing and growing with stem cells an ear on his arm that will be internet enabled.
Anti-civilization and anti-technology radio talk show host John Zerzan goes head to head with Tim Cannon, transhumanist CEO of Grindhouse Wetwares as they discuss and debate the ethical and philosophical landscape around humanity and our relationship with our own bodies, civilization and technology. Bring popcorn.
A haunting, subtle, urgent documentary, FIXED questions commonly held beliefs about disability and normalcy by exploring technologies that promise to change our bodies and mind forever. Told primarily through the perspectives of five people with disabilities: a scientist, journalist, disability justice educator, bionics engineer and exoskeleton test pilot, FIXED takes a close look at the implications of emerging human enhancement technologies for the future of humanity.
Our concepts about our own bodies and our relationships with them are at the very root of our sexuality and our modern ideas of the cyborg are heavily influenced by Donna Haraway’s rejection of traditional feminism in her 1984 Cyborg Manifesto. In this panel, we discuss the issues and ideas around bodyhacking and feminism, “what even is gender” when you’re a cyborg, and how, if even, we integrate technology in our sexual lives and gender expression.
Join Rich Lee as he discusses the future of sex and the technologies that will alter human intercourse forever. Rich will discuss his own work developing vibrating sex implants as well as other cybernetic technologies on the horizon. The future of sex is likely more vivid, more intense, and far more alien than any of us could have imagined.
Stelarc is a performance artist who explores alternate anatomical
architectures, interrogating issues of agency, identity and the posthuman. He
is an artist whose projects incorporate prosthetics, robotics, biotechnology,
medical imaging and the internet. He has performed with a Third Hand, a
Stomach Sculpture, Exoskeleton, a 6-legged walking robot and a Prosthetic
Head. Fractal Flesh, Ping Body and Parasite are internet performances that
explore remote and involuntary choreography. He is surgically constructing
and stem-cell growing an ear on his arm that will be internet enabled. With the
Propel performance, his body’s trajectory, velocity and position/orientation
was choreographed by a 6 degree-of- freedom industrial robot. And in Re-Wired
/ Re-Mixed, for 5 days, 6 hours a day he could only see with the eyes of
someone in London, hear with the ears of someone in New York, whilst
simultaneously, anyone anywhere could remote control his arm via an
exoskeleton. In 1996 he was made an Honorary Professor of Art and Robotics
at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh and in 2002 was awarded an
Honorary Doctorate of Laws by Monash University, Melbourne. In 2010 was
awarded the Ars Electronica Hybrid Arts Prize. In 2014 he initiated and was
the Director of the Alternate Anatomies Lab. In 2015 he received the Australia
Council’s Emerging and Experimental Arts Award. In 2016 he was awarded
an Honorary Doctorate from the Ionian University, Corfu. Stelarc is currently a
Distinguished Research Fellow, School of Design and Art at Curtin University.
His artwork is represented by the Scott Livesey Galleries, Melbourne.
Some call him the “sex mad cyborg”. Other people call him Rich Lee, the biohacker, cyborg, and Grinder. Rich made headlines in 2013 after he implanted his own headphones as a part of a series of cyborg audio experiments. Rich is the CEO of Cyborgasmics, developers of the Lovetron9000 vibrating pelvic implant.
Liz Parrish is the Founder and CEO of BioViva, a company committed to extending healthy lifespans using gene and cell technologies. In 2015, Liz became the first person in the world to take dual gene therapies to treat aging. Liz is known as “the woman who wants to genetically engineer you,” she is a humanitarian, entrepreneur and innovator, and a leading voice for regenerative medicine. She is also the founder of BioTrove Investments and BioTrove Podcasts which is committed to offering a meaningful way for people to learn about and fund research in regenerative medicine.
Dr. Justin C. Sanchez, Director, Biological Technologies Office (BTO), Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Dr. Justin Sanchez was named Director of BTO in May 2016, after serving as Acting Deputy Director of
BTO since December 2015. He joined DARPA as a Program Manager in 2013 to explore neurotechnology,
brain science and systems neurobiology.
Before coming to DARPA, Dr. Sanchez was an Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering and
Neuroscience at the University of Miami, and a faculty member of the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis.
He directed the Neuroprosthetics Research Group, where he oversaw development of neural-interface
medical treatments and neurotechnology for treating paralysis and stroke, and for deep brain
stimulation for movement disorders, Tourette’s syndrome and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.
Dr. Sanchez holds Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Engineering degrees in Biomedical Engineering,
and a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Science, all from the University of Florida.
Educated at Stanford, San Francisco State and USC, John Zerzan was active in the movement of the ‘60s in San Francisco and Berkeley.
In recent years he has been published in the theory journal TELOS, the Detroit publication Fifth Estate, Eugene’s Green Anarchy, Species Traitor (anarcho-primitivist)
and Black and Green Review His books include Elements of Refusal (1988, 1998), Future Primitive (1994), Against Civilization (1999), Running on Emptiness (2002), Twilight of the Machines (2008), and Origins: A John Zerzan Reader (2010), Future Primitive Revisited (2012), and Why Hope? (2015). His Peoples History of Civilization will appear spring 2018.
An active participant in the contemporary anarchist resurgence, Zerzan has been an invited speaker at both radical and conventional events on several continents. His weekly Anarchy Radio broadcast streams live on KWVA radio, Eugene; past shows are available at www.johnzerzan.net. A special focus has been the nature of technology and the tech-
Arabelle Sicardi is a beauty & fashion writer for Teen VOGUE, ALLURE, Dazed & Confused, PAPER and more. They’ve written about the crossroads between beauty, tech, and gender for years. Right now they’re interested in the future of surveillance and beauty technology and they are currently writing a book on beauty and war.
Angel Giuffria, also known as the “bionic actress”, was born missing her left arm below the elbow. She is the youngest on record to wear a myoelectric prosthetic hand – which are the first generation “bionic” hands and can be controlled via muscle impulse. She grew up wearing different versions of the hands as they advanced aiding in her fascination with technology as a whole. She was one the first to wear the Bebionic v3 small size multiarticulating hand. She is an actress, public speaker, model and technology enthusiast. Angel has been a past BDYHAX speaker and the host of Put Together: The BDYHAX Fashion Show.
Tim Cannon is an American software developer, entrepreneur, and biohacker based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is best known as Chief Information Officer of Grindhouse Wetware, a biotechnology startup company that creates technology to augment human capabilities. Cannon himself has had a variety of body modification implants, and has been referred to in the media as a cyborg. Tim has spoken on subjects including technological ethics, sensory substitution, and citizen science.
Precision piercing, advanced modification, scarification & body suspension artist.
Patricia Grant is the Director of Research for Wicab, Inc., developers of the BrainPort V100. The BrainPort V100 is a non-invasive sensory substitution assistive device that allows people who are blind to perceive visual information using the tongue.
Her current research involves investigating the impact of the BrainPort V100 on the functional performance and quality of life of people who have been blinded by traumatic injury. Future research includes demonstrating the value of the BrainPort V100 in improving educational and vocational outcomes for persons who are blind.
John brings a deep understanding of creating innovative consumer experiences, building brands and leveraging new and emerging platforms to JAZZ. He is a proven leader in consumer technology and digital media with a career spanning nearly 20 years of building, scaling and running high-growth companies of all sizes, from initial seed through to late stage operation.
He currently is an investor and active advisor to many early-stage companies, in areas ranging from virtual reality (VR) platforms and content publishers to digital health apps for diagnosing and treating cognitive conditions like ADHD.
John was most recently the General Manager of Disney’s (DIS) mobile and social games division, where he launched many chart topping titles while handling the full P&L for this multi-hundred million dollar business.
He has built and scaled several platforms including the first cloud-based streaming games and media company, OnLive, backed by AT&T and British Telecom, where he built the award-winning product side of the business as well as the entire content ecosystem, forging strong relationships with hundreds of media and entertainment companies. He founded and ran the leading company in the mobile application development and messaging space, Bitmo, which he sold in 2002.
He has also been involved in several restructurings and turnarounds, playing a key role in the re-launching of Activision (ATVI) from bankruptcy through to huge commercial success, as well as the restructuring and sale of the leading European game publisher Eidos (EIDSY).
The products that he and his teams have built have touched hundreds of millions of consumers across the globe. He holds a degree in Engineering from Yale.
Bushra is an artist-designer whose work explores body centred experiences and things bringing together art and science through the use of a range of traditional and new media, from couture to digital installation to tell stories. Previously she has developed work which explores the function of music as a trigger for an immersive sensory archive for older people. She has a background in wearable technology, sustainable fashion and software engineering. She has explored memory, illusion and sense-of-self amongst other human conditions. Her current project is an immersive multi-sensory wearable VR experience exploring Dark Matter Dark Energy which she has presented at the V & A museum and was a finalist at the New European Media Summit 2016 in Porto.
She holds an MA in Applied Imagination from Central Saint Martins (Distinction), a BA in Fashion from the London College of Fashion, as well as an earlier BSc from Imperial College in Biochemistry, which enables her to bring a unique perspective and range of skills to her work.
Birce Ozkan is an interactive fashion and wearable technology designer, researcher, lecturer and curator based in New York. After receiving her bachelor’s degree in International Relations at Koc University in Istanbul, she completed her MFA in Design and Technology at Parsons School of Design in New York where she currently teaches Interactive Garments course.
Her work and projects concentrate on augmenting the interactivity on the body, combining fashion, technology, nature, and art. Her current focus is to create pieces of dynamic wearable technologies that are inspired by nature and change in response to their environment.
Richard Thieme (www.thiemeworks.com) is an author and professional speaker who addresses the challenges posed by new technologies and the future, how to redesign ourselves to meet these challenges, and creativity in response to radical change. He has published hundreds of articles, dozens of short stories, five books with more coming, and has delivered hundreds of speeches. A novel, FOAM, was published in September 2015 and “A Richard Thieme Reader,” collecting fiction and non-fiction, was published on Amazon Kindle in 2016. His pre-blog column, “Islands in the Clickstream,” was distributed to thousands of subscribers in sixty countries before collection as a book in 2004. When a friend at the NSA told him, “The only way you can tell the truth [that we discuss} is through fiction,” he returned to writing short stories (35 published to date), one result of which is “Mind Games,” a collection of nineteen stories about anomalies, infosec, professional intelligence and edgy realities.
Recently, Prof Sutton was on leave from her faculty position to serve as a political appointee for Pres. George W. Bush, as the Chief Counsel for the Research and Innovative Technology Administration, U.S. Department of Transportation in Washington, D.C. from September 2005 until January 2007.
Victoria Sutton is a Paul Whitfield Horn Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Biodefense, Law and Public Policy at Texas Tech University, the only center at a law school in the U.S. to focus solely on issues of law and biodefense, biosecurity and bioterrorism (www.ttu.edu/biodefense). She established the Law and Science Certificate Program with unanimous support of the faculty, and directs the JD/MS Program in Environmental Toxicology, Biotechnology and Plant and Soil Sciences.
Merging the empirical and the creative, Liviu spent the last 10 years leading projects driven to impact social and fiscal layers of society. Liviu was the COO of Videre est Credere, featured in the WIRED as ‘Carlos’, due to security restrictions at the time the article was published.
I currently serve on the boards of Strava, Returnly & Freedom Financial.
I founded and ran three Internet companies: I/PRO, Topica & TextMarks. I was an active board member at a number of technology companies, including Kana Software, LinkExchange, StumbleUpon, Silicon Investor & Odeo.
I am an active angel investor. My investments include AdMob, Flixster, Optimizely, Brightroll, Slideshare, Pantheon, Instructables, Thumbtack, VivaReal, Mashery, Viki, Digital Impact, Change.org and NexTag.
My current focus is human augmentation. Please let me know about projects in this space!
Kristina’s passions have always revolved around the intersection of business and creativity. Since graduating with honors in Marketing, Advertising and PR she has been involved with organizing events such as TEDx and Youth on The Move as well as consulting for fashion tech and wearable tech startups. Fascinated with way technology is changing society and business, she dedicated her undergraduate research on the effects of social networks on client – advertising agencies relationships. Apart from passion for researching trends, she has experience in content management, journalism and social media marketing.
Olly McBride is a founding member of Open Bionics’ engineering team. Olly is Open Bionics’ lead software engineer and as a robotics engineer he focuses on human and machine interface. Olly’s field enables amputees to have dexterous control over their robotic limbs.
Dr. Leandra Preston-Sidler is an Associate Lecturer in Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Central Florida and has developed and teaches courses including Girls Studies, Virtual Girls, Girls and the Body, Third Wave Feminisms, and Theories of Masculinities. She earned her PhD in Texts and Technology in 2015 at UCF where she focused on girls and digital literacy, identity construction in online spaces, and body technologies. Her research interests include biotechnologies, cyborg theories, body image and resistance in online spaces, girls and digital literacy, and violence and masculinity.
Zack Lynch is an entrepreneur, market maven and futurist who brings a rich understanding of the technologies and companies driving the experiential technology market to JAZZ.
Zack is the founder and Chairman of the Neurotechnology Industry Organization, a global trade association representing companies involved in neuroscience, brain research institutes and patient advocacy groups, which has more than 120 member organizations all focused on accelerating the development of treatments for neurological diseases, psychiatric illnesses and nervous system injuries.
He is the founder and curator of the Experiential Technology and NeuroGaming Conference and Expo which is the leading meeting bringing together game designers, neuroscientists, tech executives and investors.
Zack is the author of the best selling book, The Neuro Revolution: How Brain Science Is Changing our World published by St. Martin’s Press and translated into many languages. Previously, he co-founded NeuroInsights, a market research and investment advisory firm that advises global organizations on the impact of neurotechnology on business, government and society. NeuroInsights hosts an annual Neurotech Investing and Partnering Conference each May. He was the publisher of the investment newsletter, Neurotech Insights and co-author of NeuroInsights 600-page annual investment analysis of the global neurotech industry. He also developed the NASDAQ NeuroInsights Neurotech Index, a stock tracking index for neuroscience companies.
He has been a founder and executive at several software companies in wellness, profit optimization, knowledge management and collaborative forecasting. Mr. Lynch speaks frequently and is quoted widely in the press including: Forbes, LA Times, O the Oprah Magazine, San Francisco Chronicle, Scientific American, Science, Slate and many more.
Mr. Lynch serves on the advisory boards of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT, Center for Neuroeconomic Studies at Claremont Graduate University, the Center for Neuroscience and Society at the University of Pennsylvania, as well as several private neurosoftware companies. He has a B.S. in Evolutionary Biology, B.S. in Environmental Science and M.A. in Economic Geography, all from UCLA.
Richard Garriott de Cayeux is a founding father of the videogame industry and the commercial spaceflight industry, a flown astronaut, and an accomplished explorer.
He has been inducted into the computer gaming hall of fame and has received the industry lifetime achievement award. He is credited with creating the now ubiquitous term “avatar” for one’s virtual self and the category of massively multiplayer games (MMORPGs). He authored the acclaimed Ultima Series and has built 3 leading gaming companies: Origin Systems (sold to Electronic Arts), Destination Games (sold to NCsoft) and Portalarium where he is building Shroud of the Avatar, the successor to his previous works.
As a principal shaper of the commercial spaceflight industry, he cofounded Space Adventures, the only company to arrange space flights for private citizens and is the sixth private astronaut to live aboard the International Space Station. The son of a NASA astronaut, he became the first second-generation astronaut and has been a key leader in civilian and commercial space as an investor and Board member of institutions such as the X-Prize Foundation, Space Adventures, and Planetary Resources.
Richard is an avid explorer, having traveled around the globe from the jungles of the Amazon to the South Pole, the deep seas of the Titanic and hydrothermal vents to orbiting the earth aboard the International Space Station. His non-profit and philanthropic works include serving on the boards of The Explorers Club and The Challenger Center for Science Education. Richard’s new book, “Explore/Create,” chronicles his life from the early days of video gaming, through his spaceflight and to the present day and will be available on bookshelves January 2017.
Scott D. Novich, PhD is a cofounder and Chief Technology Officer at NeoSensory, Inc. NeoSensory is a sensory augmentation wearables company working to empower people with new senses. The company is a spin-off from his PhD work with his cofounder and former thesis advisor, neuroscientist, and author, Dr. David M. Eagleman.
Rob Spence is a one eyed filmmaker who has a prosthetic eye with a wireless video camera embedded in it. It’s not connected to his brain but it does provide the world’s first literal point of view including glancing around and blinking.
John Polansky makes the tiny video camera and wireless transmitters and Martin Ling manages to fit all the components into a two part prosthetic eye.
The team received one Time magazine’s 50 best inventions of the year.
Dr. Stickler is a pioneer in the advancement of human potential. He currently functions as physician and coach to the highest achievers. His clients come from nearly every State and a dozen foreign countries. These are the CEO’s, entrepreneurs, and other top professionals in their field.
He helps each client to find his or her own hidden potential. Working with nutrition, fitness, stress, sleep, and peak cognitive performance, he is able to truly optimize the human potential.
Moon Ribas (May 24th, 1985) is a Catalan contemporary choreographer and the co-founder of the Cyborg Foundation, an international organization that aims to help people become cyborgs, defend cyborg rights and promote cyborgism as an artistic and social movement. Moon graduated in Choreography at Dartington College of Arts (England), and studied at Theatreschool of Amsterdam SNDO (School for New Dance Development). Since 2007 Moon has been experimenting with different cybernetics devices that allow her to perceive movement in a deeper way. Moon’s main research consists in developing the seismic sense, perceiving the movement of real-time earthquakes all around the world, small as 1 in Richter scale. Moon then translates this new sense on stage, her main piece is called Waiting for Earthquakes, a piece where she stands waiting for an earthquake to take place, when this happen she moves according to the intensity of the earthquake, so if there are no earthquakes there will be no dance. Ribas has performed and given talks in several venues and festivals such as TedxMunich (Germany), TedxMuscat (Oman), Campus Party London (UK), Fierce Fest (UK) or TNT (Festival of New Trends, Spain).
A futurist in practice. A television producer. A practical transhumanist. And the person to show you the vast possibilities of wearable tech.
Ryan O’Shea is a television producer, entrepreneur, and futurist speaker from Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. He is the host of the Future Grind podcast, which focuses on topics relating to science, technology, and futurism. Ryan also is the Head of Media and Business for the biotechnology company Grindhouse Wetware, which creates technologies that augment human capabilities. This has earned him considerable media attention from those who rightly feel that they are “building the future.”
Grindhouse Wetware has been featured in National Geographic, Wired, Popular Science, VICE, SyFy, Business Insider, and NPR among many others. Ryan also represented Grindhouse as a nominee for a TIME and Fortune magazine affiliated World Technology Summit award in 2014. Ryan is currently deep into talks with various productions companies and networks who want to create a television series about his work.
In addition to his biotech and futurism work, Ryan produces content for The Buried Life, an organization best known for their hit MTV television series of the same name. The show follows four millennials as they travel North America (and the world) attempting to cross items off of their list of ‘100 Things To Do Before You Die.’ For each item they cross off of their list, they help a complete stranger cross something off of theirs.
Since the show ended, Ryan and The Buried Life have continued to inspire people to go after their goals and live the life they want through a New York Times bestselling book, an international speaking tour, and a brand new forthcoming television show. Previously, Ryan held a position in a congressional office at the US Capitol. He’s also an active volunteer currently serving on various committees and philanthropic organizations. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2012.
Amal Graafstra has always been interested in technology. Amal had two small RFID transponders implanted, one into each hand, and he uses them to open doors, start his vehicles, and log into his computer. Since implanting himself, he’s written a book called RFID Toys, become a TEDx speaker, appeared on a multitude of television programs, and been the subject of various documentaries. His company, Dangerous Things developed the world’s first and only NFC compliant implantable transponder.
Canadian futurist, science writer, and ethicist, George Dvorsky has written and spoken extensively about the impacts of cutting-edge science and technology—particularly as they pertain to the improvement of human performance and experience. He is a contributing editor at io9, the Chairman of the Board at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies and is the program director for the Rights of Non-Human Persons program.
Cory Doctorow (craphound.com) is a science fiction author, activist, journalist and blogger — the co-editor of Boing Boing (boingboing.net) and the author of the YA graphic novel IN REAL LIFE, the nonfiction business book INFORMATION DOESN’T WANT TO BE FREE, and young adult novels like HOMELAND, PIRATE CINEMA and LITTLE BROTHER and novels for adults like RAPTURE OF THE NERDS and MAKERS. He works for the Electronic Frontier Foundation and co founded the UK Open Rights Group. Born in Toronto, Canada, he now lives in Los Angeles.
Jason Barnes amputee/musician/actor. After a work accident that resulted in amputation of his right hand, Jason has been inspired to continue his career in music and develop tech and prosthetics to bring life to his performances. He is involved in various projects including Shimon Robot and the Cyborg Drummer project, and CYBRNETX, a producer DJ duo that focuses on providing a great performance while spreading awareness about transhumanism.