30 July 2015 16:03

A thought-leader from one of the world’s biggest companies is to explain how the ‘Internet of Things’ will revolutionise our lives during a special one-off talk at Lancaster University.

James Whittaker, Distinguished Technical Evangelist at Microsoft, will deliver a masterclass for staff, students, and businesses on the Internet of Things (the name given to everyday objects that are connected to the internet, such as fridges, road sensors and even sheep) and the role of data in our society. This is a subject that affects us all on a daily basis and is expected to significantly grow in both size and importance as technology develops.

The free masterclass, between 10.30am and 12noon on Monday, 17 August, is open to all members of the public and business leaders.

Ian McCormick, Director of Research & Enterprise Services at Lancaster University, said: “It gives us great pleasure to welcome one of the world’s leading thinkers in technology to talk at Lancaster University. Dr Whittaker is a very accomplished and passionate speaker and will provide an entertaining and enlightening account of how the Internet of Things is revolutionising the world around us.”

A technology executive with a career that spans academia, start-ups and top tech companies, 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.

He then entered graduate school at the University of Tennessee where he received his PhD in computer science in 1992.

Following academia, he worked as a freelance developer specializing in test automation. He worked in 13 different countries over a five year period, most notably for IBM, Ericsson, SAP, Cisco and Microsoft.

A creative and sought-after speaker, Dr Whittaker’s first stint at Microsoft was in Trustworthy Computing and then Visual Studio. In 2009 he joined Google as an engineering director and led teams working on Chrome, Chrome OS, Maps and Google+. He was also the keynote speaker for Google Developer Days. In 2012 he re-joined Microsoft to build the Bing Information Platform and is now a Distinguished Engineer and technical evangelist charged with showing Microsoft’s vision of the future to the world.

To find out more about the masterclass and to book places visit this link.

More information on data science at Lancaster University, including how businesses can benefit from the university’s data science expertise, can be found by visiting http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/data-science/