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Microsoft thought-leader shares ideas with Lancashire entrepreneurs

James Whittaker

21 December 2015

Microsoft's Distinguished Technical Evangelist James Whittaker returned to the Management School last week to share his insights on the Internet of Things with a select audience.  

Dr Whittaker visited Lancaster back in August to deliver a masterclass to members of the public and business leaders. He was subsequently invited to deliver a second session for the Department of Entrepreneurship, Strategy and Innovation and their partners in industry.

Returning last Wednesday, he spoke to an audience of around 60 people, made up of students on the Innovation in Manufacturing and Engineering (IME) course and 42 of LUMS’s . Again, the topic was the Internet of Things (the name given to everyday objects that are connected to the internet, such as fridges and road sensors).

Dr Whittaker began his career with the distinction of being the first computer science graduate to be hired by the FBI where he worked to automate agents’ caseloads. Since gaining his PhD in computer science in 1992, he has worked with notable companies such as IBM, Ericsson, SAP, Cisco, Google and Microsoft.

He is now a Distinguished Engineer and Technical Evangelist at Microsoft, charged with showing the company’s vision of the future to the world.

Dr Whittaker said: "I'm here to challenge the best UK universities, of which Lancaster is one, to think hard about the future and the evolution of technology.

“We have some big challenges facing humanity and the more smart people we have thinking about them, the better."