Kyna Leski is a designer and architecture professor at RISD, where she explores the craft of architecture as a design form. Artistic sensibility, she suggests, comes from the actual process of gathering, seeing, and grasping -- allowing us to “know” the world. She is also Principal at 3six0 Architecture. (3six0.com)
Photographer Chris Jordan specializes in large-scale works that depict the magnitude of our consumerism and its impact on our environment. In one of the most emotional presentations at PopTech 2009, Jordan shares heart-wrenching images of birds killed by ingesting plastics that increasingly pollute our oceans.
Assaf Biderman is the Associate Director of the SENSEable City Laboratory, an MIT university research group that explores the “real-time city” by studying how distributed technologies can be used to improve our understanding of cities and create a more sustainable ways of interacting in urban environments.
Reihan Salam, a fellow at the New America Foundation, writes on politics, culture, and technology. At PopTech 2009, Salam argues that America has been growing steadily more diverse, and divided by massive inequalities, a trend that will lead the country down a path of increasing social conservatism. Salam is also co-author of Grand New Party: How Conservatives Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream.
Fiddle virtuoso Mark O'Connor and 14-year-old prodigy fiddler Ruby Jane Smith share the 2009 PopTech stage. Together they mesmerize audiences with the duets that play tribute to the spirit of Americana music, at times slow and melancholy, and others rousing and lyrical.