MEMS Executive Congress® US 2012
Keynote Speakers

Thursday, November 8th - Morning Keynote Speaker
Ajith Amerasekera
Director, Product Acceleration, High Performance Analog Business
Texas Instruments

Dr. Ajith Amerasekera is a TI Fellow and IEEE Fellow. He was director of TI’s Kilby Labs, and now has responsibility for product development engineering in TI’s High Performance Analog business. After receiving his Ph.D. in 1986, he worked at Philips Research Labs, Eindhoven, The Netherlands, on the first submicron semiconductor development. In 1991, he joined Texas Instruments, Dallas, working in the VLSI Design Labs on circuit and device modeling of high-current effects in devices and circuits. Since 1999, he has been working on circuit design and IP development for TI’s CMOS technologies. Before taking up the role at the Kilby Labs, Dr. Amerasekera was Chief Technical Officer for TI’s ASIC Business Unit and director of ASIC Technology Strategy. He has 30 issued patents, and has published over 100 papers in technical journals and conferences, as well as 4 books on Integrated Circuits. Ajith has served on the technical program committees of a number of international conferences including the VLSI Symposium on Circuits, the ISSCC, and the IEDM.
"Ultra Low Power Electronics in the Next Decade"
We are seeing a shift in electronic technology from centralized and high-touch to ubiquitous and low-touch. Semiconductors and MEMS are enabling more intelligent systems to be developed that enable a more immersive environment expanding the role and applications of electronic technology. Known as the Internet of Things, this immersive environment enables the environment to adapt and anticipate to our needs to ensure our maximum convenience with optimum use of our natural resources. These new systems will be small and deployed in vast numbers distributing intelligence across the board and dramatically changing the management of our cities, building, personal life, health, transportation, safety and security. Driving this change is the availability of low-power electronics for wireless connectivity and performance processing driven by technology companies like Texas Instruments.
Thursday, November 8th - Afternoon Keynote Speaker
Robert Brunner
Founder, Creative Director and Partner

Robert Brunner’s career as an industrial designer is deeply tied with the evolution of the high technology industry itself. The son of a development pioneer of the first hard disk drives built at IBM, the San Jose native pursued a lifelong fascination for high tech products as a designer after graduating with a degree in Industrial Design from San Jose State University in 1981.
Robert’s work has spawned numerous brand-defining designs during the past two decades. He founded Lunar Design in 1984 after working as a designer and project manager at several Silicon Valley companies. He subsequently went on to become director of industrial design at Apple Computer in 1989, where he established the internal design group and provided design and direction for notable product lines such as the Macintosh, the original PowerBook and Newton. In 1996, he became partner in the San Francisco office of Pentagram, one of the world’s most influential design firms, working with numerous Fortune 500 companies including Dell, Amazon, Nike and Hewlett Packard on strategic brand consulting and industrial design programs.
In 2006, alongside his tenure as a Pentagram partner, Brunner launched Fuego, a new concept in outdoor grilling, in partnership with Alex Siow, founder of Zephyr Ventilation. As Fuego’s chief industrial designer, Brunner is re-defining the rituals of outdoor cooking by embracing high levels of modernist design and utility.
In 2007, working with Interscope Geffen A&M chairman Jimmy Iovine and hip hop icon Dr. Dre, Robert helped launch the Beats by Dr. Dre brand of headphones and created the popular Beats Studio line. In a relatively short time, Beats by Dr. Dre has become the most sought after brand in personal audio. Today, he and his team create the majority of Beats products on the market.
Robert left Pentagram in mid 2007 to found Ammunition, a product design, brand and interactive development consultancy based in San Francisco. He leads his company as founder and creative director, focusing on communicating strategic innovation through product design, brand and surrounding experience. Ammunition’s current clients include Barnes and Noble, Polaroid, Kohler, Williams-Sonoma and Adobe.
Robert’s work has been widely published in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. His product designs have been recognized in numerous design and industry awards and reviews, and his work is included in the permanent design collections of the Museum of Modern Art in both New York San Francisco. His firm Ammunition has been listed in Fast Company Magazine’s top 10 innovative design companies list for three years running, and last year Robert was featured in the magazine’s list of top 100 creative professionals. Robert also has taught advanced product design at Stanford University.
"Ideas, not Objects"

In the hyper competitive world of consumer products, why do so few stand out as authentic, original ideas? Most seem like derivative clones all cut from the same DNA. Most fail. Many are poor design. But a few are amazing breakthroughs that change our world.

How do the really great ones happen? Ironically, it’s usually not the technologybehind it that ultimately makes it successful. Rather, It’s because there is a compelling idea and purpose behind it that is relevant and valuable to people, and a great experience that is built off this. And ultimately it is about the passion and commitment of the people behind the product. We feel this and want to be part of it. Ironically, only an handful of companies around the world understand this.

In this talk, renowned industrial designer Robert Brunner will use the case of the popular brand he helped create, Beats by Dr. Dre, to illustrate what the guiding ideals are to make a great product experience.