It’s a groundbreaking international conference providing industry leaders the chance to discuss issues at the centre of society and technology.  True North focused on how to re-imagine and reaffirm tech as a force for good in the world.

Attracting more than 2,000 of the most engaged leaders and influencers from the region and around the world, the three-day event was hosted across the region, in downtown Kitchener and at the new event space at Lot 42.

In attendance, familiar faces, including six former Waterloo students, now leaders in the tech space (Ali Asaria, Carol Leaman, Joseph Fung, Mary Pat Hinton, Richard Yim, Ted Livingston), and current English Professor/Director of the Critical Media Lab Marcel O’Gorman.  All took to the stage as highlight speakers during the event.  Topics of discussion ranged from the role human workers play in the post automation/post AI world, to the importance of using technology for the social good.

Joseph Fung speaking to crowd

Waterloo grad and CEO of Kiite Joseph Fung.

“This is the first generation where people will grow up and live and work amongst intelligent machines,” said Joseph Fung, Waterloo grad and CEO of Kiite.  “How are we going to perform when our next coworker is actually an AI?  The reality is the onus is on us to create, and make sure, that it’s a safe and effective environment.”

The conference, powered by Communitech and many community partners, spanned three days, initially beginning on Waterloo’s campus where networking and collaboration opportunities were offered between the University’s research teams and startup companies and innovation enthusiasts.

“We were an early and proud supporter of True North Waterloo,” said Sandra Banks, vice-president of University Relations.  “It is inspiring to see our alumni in the spotlight sharing their experience and insights as they continue to shape our economy and our world.”

For more information on the True North conference, including 2019 dates, visit their website.

True North banner

Photography courtesy of Lucas Dunlop.