Robots, AI, and the Future of Work

Jun 12th - Jun 14th 2019
Omni William Penn Hotel

Robots aren’t killing job categories so much as reducing the number of humans needed as we start to automate parts of jobs. Thus, we need to better understand human-robot collaboration—and not just in the workplace, but at home, and even, as the science and engineering of prosthetics advances, within and around our bodies. How much work should be done by the machines? How do we avoid a dangerous over-reliance on them? What systems will be the first to reach full autonomy? What happens to our institutions of work? And finally, the Skynet question: Will humans and machines continue to co-exist in the long term?


Elevate: A Walking/Driving/Climbing Robot-Car

John Suh, Vice President & Founding Director, Hyundai CRADLE

Dr. John Suh is Vice President & Founding Director, Hyundai CRADLE, and was previously the Founding Director of Hyundai Ventures. He is responsible for the company’s strategic equity investments and external partnerships for accelerating innovation in AI, robotics, smart mobility, smart cities, ecofriendly energy for transportation, manufacturing 4.0, IoT, in-cabin experiences, and future transportation systems. Suh has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Kettering University and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University.

The Workforce Implications of Machine Learning

Tom Mitchell, University Professor, Carnegie Mellon University

Dr. Tom Mitchell is the E. Fredkin University Professor at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science and former Chair of the Machine Learning Department. Mitchell is known for his contributions to the advancement of machine learning, artificial intelligence, and cognitive neuroscience and is the author of the textbook Machine Learning. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a Fellow the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence. He is also a Fellow and past president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He has a B.S. from MIT and M.S. and Ph.D. from Stanford University, all in Electrical Engineering.

Where Are the Flying Cars? 

Sanjiv Singh, Chief Executive Officer at Near Earth Autonomy

Dr. Sanjiv Singh is the Chief Executive Officer at Near Earth Autonomy, where he leads a team pushing the envelope in autonomy for aerial vehicles (from sub-meter to full scale) in both unmanned systems and enhanced manned flight, for both military and commercial applications. He was previously a Research Professor at the Carnegie Mellon University Robotics Institute. Singh has a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Denver, an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Lehigh University, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University.

AI, Comedy, and Robots

Heather Knight, Assistant Professor of Computer Science, Oregon State University

Dr. Heather Knight is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Oregon State University. Her research interests include human–robot interaction, non-verbal machine communications and non-anthropomorphic social robots. She directs the CHARISMA Research Lab, whose goal is to operationalize methods from the performing arts to make more charismatic robots. Off campus, she heads up robot theater company Marilyn Monrobot, which has an annual Robot Film Festival and features robot comedy performances by Ginger the Robot. Past honors include the 2011 Forbes List for 30 under 30 in Science, a TED Robot Comedy talk, and the VMA-winning "This too shall pass" OK GO Rube Goldberg Machine music video. Knight has B.S. (Electrical Engineering) and M.S. (Electrical Engineering and Computer Science) degrees from MIT, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University.

The Robots of Today and Tomorrow

Martial Hebert, Director, Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University

Dr. Martial Hebert is a Professor at Carnegie Mellon University and Director of its Robotics Institute. He works in the areas of computer vision and perception for autonomous systems. Hebert has played a role in such high-profile projects as NavLab, a pioneering program for self-driving vehicles, and in leading the development of perception capabilities for personal care robots in the Quality of Life Technology Center. He has been with the Robotics Institute for all but four of its 35 years and has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Paris.

Natural and Artificial Intelligence in Organizational Environments

Andreas Martin, Lecturer, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland

Dr. Andreas Martin is an information systems researcher, teacher and practitioner. He focuses on the digitalization of business processes, enterprise software architecture and artificial intelligence covering machine learning and knowledge representation. He is also a Judo coach and head of a youth center. Martin has B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Business Information Technology from the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland and a Ph.D. in Information Systems from the University of South Africa, College of Science, Engineering and Technology.

Extracting Knowledge from Text

Peter Clark, Senior Research Manager for the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence

Dr. Peter Clark is a Senior Research Manager for the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence and leads its Project Aristo, a new initiative in large-scale extraction of knowledge from text (machine reading) and its application to answering science questions. His primary areas of research are natural language understanding, large knowledge bases, machine inference, and commonsense reasoning. He has previously held research positions at Vulcan Inc., Boeing, The University of Texas, and the National Research Council Canada. Clark has a B.A. in Physics from Oxford University, a Masters degree in Information Technology from the University of Edinburgh and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Strathclyde University.

Autonomous Robots and the Challenge of Mobility

Joydeep Bis, Assistant Professor, College of Information and Computer Sciences, University of Massachusetts

Dr. Joydeep Bis is an Assistant Professor in the College of Information and Computer Sciences at the University of Massachusetts. He was previously a post-doctoral fellow in the Computer Science Department at Carnegie Mellon University. He has a B.Tech. in Engineering Physics from Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Robotics from CMU. 

Perception, Terrain, and Self-Driving Vehicles

Carl Wellington, Director, Perception Lead for Self-Driving Cars, Advanced Technologies Group, Uber

Carl Wellington is the perception lead at the Uber Advanced Technologies Group in Pittsburgh, working on self-driving cars. He was previously a robotics researcher at the National Robotics Engineering Center of the Robotics Institute, where he focused on autonomous navigation and safeguarding of outdoor vehicles, such as an agricultural tractor. He has a B.S. in Engineering from Swarthmore College and a Ph.D. in Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University. He is a self-described Fritos addict and no longer owns a car.

Field Trip

A TTI/Vanguard robotics/AI conference in Pittsburgh—of course the field trip will be to Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), home of the Robotics Institute, the world’s largest robotics R&D organization. In addition to a visit to the National Robotics Engineering Center (NREC), this field trip will highlight coordinated applications of sensors, robotics, and AI, and research conducted at the Traffic21 and Metro21 institutes, which are transforming Pittsburgh into a smart city. As such, our transition from CMU’s main campus to NREC will include a guided tour of the Adaptive Traffic Signals Corridor and the Living Edge Lab.

Afternoon of Wednesday, June 12

12:30-12:50            Transfer from Omni to CMU

12:55-1:10               Intro/Overview 

1:20-2:50                 Metro 21 demos & Robotics / AI demos

3:00-3:40                 Transfer to NREC, via Living Edge Lab and Adaptive Traffic Signals Corridor, with on-bus tour

3:45-4:30                 NREC

4:30-5:00                 Return transfer to Omni


Omni William Penn Hotel

530 William Penn Pl
Pittsburgh, PA 15219


Reservations and Travel

Hotel Reservation Deadline
May 17, 2019

TTI/Vanguard Group Hotel Rate
TTI/Vanguard has arranged a discounted block of rooms at the Omni William Penn Hotel.
Deluxe Room: USD$199 (single) / USD$209 (double) per night ++
Premiere King Room: USD$229 (single) / USD$239 (double) per night ++

Online Reservations 
CLICK HERE for TTI/Vanguard’s group rate at the Omni William Penn Hotel.  No group code required.

Telephone Reservations
Please call Omni Reservations at +1 800.THE.OMNI (1 800.843.6664). Please identify yourself as part of the TTI/Vanguard Group to receive our group rate.  

U.S. Government Attendees 
You will receive a special link in your conference registration confirmation to make a government rate reservation directly through the hotel’s website. We are unable to provide the link without an approved registration. This rate is valid through May 17 or until the government room block fills, whichever comes first. Reservations made after that date are on a space available basis. We recommend booking your room early! If you have any questions, please contact the meeting planner, Robin Lockett at +1 310.394.8305, ext. 245 or

Due to the limited amount of per diem rooms available to our group, only U.S. Government agencies will be able to receive the per diem rate.  Unfortunately, we are unable to extend the government rate to FFRDCs.

Reservation/Changes/Cancellation Notes
• The group rate is available through May 17, 2019, and is subject to availability. 
• The rate does not include taxes or additional charges that may apply. 
• Check-in time: 3:00 pm 
• Check-out time: 12:00 pm 
• All changes/cancellations to hotel reservations are responsibility of the attendee.  TTI/Vanguard is unable to make these changes on your behalf. 

Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) 
20 miles/32 km from the hotel approximately a half hour drive, depending on traffic.

PIT Ground Transportation   

  • Taxi Service: Approximately $40 one-way
  • Uber/Lyft: Approximately USD$35 one-way
  • SuperShuttle: $23.60, one-way Group Code: KXHXY
    Enter the group code when booking to receive 10% of off Shared SuperShuttle and ExecuCar Exclusive Airport Transportation.
  • 28x Airport Flyer: The fare is $3.75 to Downtown Pittsburgh from the Pittsburgh International Airport. Get off at 7th Avenue and William Penn Place and walk 2 blocks to the hotel.        

TTI/Vanguard gladly welcomes your guest/spouse to any of our reception/dinner functions. Guests/spouses may attend breakfasts but only after the conference has begun (8:30 am–9:30 am). Please note: Guests/spouses cannot be accommodated inside our conferences, workshops, on field trips, or at our working breakfasts and lunches.

Dress for TTI/Vanguard conferences is business casual.

Wireless Internet connectivity will be provided during the meeting.

For questions about reservations and logistics for this event, please contact: Robin Lockett at or +1 310.394.8305, ext. 245.


For questions about reservations and logistics for this event, please contact Robin Lockett at or +1 310.394.8305, ext. 245.