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In this Panel, we will explore how, as a company, Microsoft has been working on envisioning and implementing new ways for human beings to achieve balance with both Nature and Technology. In this panel we will share our philosophy for our new campus where both humans and nature will be successful in exciting new ways. We will also share our thinking of achieving balance for Mixed Reality and how virtual space and physical space are being created together with the goal of having a beneficial impact on the humans that will live in this new world. Lastly we will speak to ethics as part of ensuring design is balancing human needs, the requirements of nature and the exuberance to create new technologies. Just because it CAN be built, doesn’t mean it should.
Campus Refresh – Keith Donovan
MR – Michael Harnisch
Ethics – Farm Beats – Ranveer Chandra
Jonah Sterling: From running design for start-ups, to leading Creative as the Group Creative Director for Razorfish and now moved into the world of enterprise, I’m a theatre-geek with a past in designing kids meals toys, video game UI, environmental design and sequential comic book art. I built C+AI Studios to deliver awesome experiences for products that bring in billions. My global teams deliver design-led innovation across the Azure cloud platform, Azure IoT, Blockchain, AI, Dynamics 365, Power BI, PowerApps, Flow, AppSource, Active Directory, and more. I am passionate about inclusive ‘business-centric’, multi-disciplinary design orgs that empower our product teams to be more user-obsessed. Customer relevance and business growth are the ultimate test. Across +60 products and 8 studios worldwide, I lead 330+ of the world’s most talented user experience design professionals—strategists, UX/IX designers, content designers, visual and motion designers, qualitative researchers, data scientists, and producers. My real work is to imbue each of them with a sense of purpose and urgency to realizing that vision (alongside a healthy bit of institutionalized defiance) and embolden them for quick decision making so that innovation thrives. Because awesome ain’t always easy. Design does not begin nor end at our screens. I consider every customer touch-point critical for our products. My goal is to create a world where we are not “Designers in a Business” but “Business people who Design.”
Michael Harnisch’s career has spanned across a spectrum of visual design, from comic strips to video games to graphic design to holographic software. Michael joined Microsoft in 2012 as an Art Director, building experiences for a burgeoning new platform that eventually became the HoloLens. As a Creative Director in Windows NEXT, Michael helped align Windows 1st Party app teams to the Fluent Design System, employing emotional design as a catalyst for meaningful experiences. In 2018, he joined the Mixed Reality at Work team as the Visual Design Director, collaborating across the product teams to establish the quality bar for spatial experiences designed for enterprise customers. On the weekends, you may find him venturing for Seattle’s best pastry (spoiler alert: maple fig scone at Volunteer Park Café), reading an old paperback at a coffee shop, or exploring museums with his wife, Erin, and son, Miles.
Ranveer Chandra is the Chief Scientist at Microsoft Azure Global. His research has shipped in multiple Microsoft products, including Windows, Visual Studio, XBOX, and Azure. Ranveer is leading the FarmBeats, battery research, and TV white space research projects at Microsoft. His work on FarmBeats was featured by Bill Gates on GatesNotes, and he has been invited to present his research on FarmBeats to the Secretary of Agriculture, and on TV White Spaces to the FCC Chairman. Ranveer has published over 90 research papers, and has over 100 patents that have been granted by the USPTO. He has won several awards, including best paper awards, and the MIT Technology Review’s Top Innovators Under 35. Ranveer has an undergraduate degree from IIT Kharagpur, India and a PhD from Cornell University.
Keith Donovan is the Director of Real Estate & Security at Microsoft. As head of Puget Sound development for Microsoft’s Real Estate & Security group, Keith leads its multi-billion-dollar Redmond campus modernization project, overseeing the 250-person cross-disciplinary team of development managers, architects, and contractors executing Microsoft’s vision for its new campus. Keith brings 25 years experience across all facets of real estate and project delivery, providing the mentorship, technical acumen, and clarity to lead large and dynamic teams toward the same completion goals. Originally trained as an architect, Keith moved into development management for large real estate development firms, then to leadership in corporate real estate—experience which leaves him uniquely qualified to provide strategic oversight of real estate development projects, and to drive for solutions tailored to goals of the business. Keith has a Bachelor of Architecture from University of Southern California.