Keynotes 2020

Revision State: Published
Most recent version: Yes

Lyndia Littel

Business and IST Systems through a Pandemic

9:15-10:00 a.m.

Recorded Presentation: Business and IST Systems through a Pandemic

2020 has been a very different year, to say the least. There have been so many changes to our lives, and this impact has also been seen in our workflows and tech-infrastructures. Although there have been many negative things about the COVID-19 pandemic, there are also advantages to all these forced changes. What got dropped that actually didnt matter? Did your systems have flexibility or did they crack? What were those aha moments only gleaned because everything had to change?

In this keynote, well look at the relationships between IST, business, data, clients, students, systems through the lens of pre- and post-pandemic. Well also leverage this conference to reflect on this unique opportunity that tested our normalcy of current systems. Finally, well discuss the reality of whether going back to normal is the right path or if these relationships should hold a different future.

About Lyndia Littel

Lyndia has a Bachelor of Engineering with a minor in French (University of Guelph) and a Master of Education (Wilfred Laurier University). Lyndia worked in the Mechanical Engineering department in the Faculty of Engineering at University of Waterloo to improve the engineering curriculum through the development and implementation of real-world case studies. She has written over 50 cases used in over 30 courses and educational platforms. Lyndia has written four conference papers on this work, including Implementation of a Case Study in an Engineering Science Course: A Pilot Project for Increasing Experiential Learning and Collaborating on a Case-Based Course in Quality Management and Control.

She then moved to the Engineering Outreach department in the Faculty of Engineering at Waterloo. Lyndias role was to inspire the next generation of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) enthusiasts, from kindergarten to undergraduate. She did this by developing and delivering high-impact programming that reached over 100,00 youth and 20,000 undergraduates, in addition to coordinating 500 volunteers. Lyndia received an NSERC grant to deliver high-tech programming to rural and Indigenous communities across Ontario and was a public speaker for 60+ events per year, the majority of Engineering Outreach events. She facilitated over 500 STEM workshops to a wide variety of audiences and remains very enthusiastic about the hybrid of technology and education.

Lyndia now works as Project Manager of Strategic Initiatives and Assessment in Waterloos Housing department. This means she is responsible for strategic implementation of Housings data collection and application, process improvement and workflow systems. Her goal is to ensure Housing is being efficient and effective in delivering value to students. She puts in over 250+ hours a year consulting on strategic and assessment needs for Housing staff, along with implementing Housing-wide projects. Some of her projects include setting up Scaled Scrum and agile methodology across Housing teams, centralized dashboards, and syncing major processes between enterprise and business systems.

David Gosset

Quantum Computing

3:00-3:45 p.m.

It is a familiar refrain that future quantum computers could outperform the computers we have today for certain tasks. At the same time, todays quantum computers are small and imperfect devices. In this talk I will give an overview of quantum computing and discuss how this tension forms the backdrop for recent scientific and technological developments in our field.

About David Gosset

David Gosset joined the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) as an Associate Professor in the Department of Combinatorics and Optimization at the University of Waterloo on August 1, 2018.

Gosset received his PhD in Physics from MIT in 2011 under the supervision of Edward Farhi. His doctoral work focused on the power and limitations of quantum adiabatic algorithms. This spurred his interest in the computer science perspective on physics and its application to models of computation, the computational complexity of quantum many-body systems, and quantum algorithms.

He subsequently held postdoctoral fellowships at IQC and at Caltech, before joining the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center in 2016.

Gossets research at IBM focused on fundamental questions in quantum algorithms and complexity theory which are guided by the impending availability of small quantum computers. He was most recently managing the Theory of Quantum Algorithms group at IBM, before returning to IQC.