Today, music is already intricately linked with technology. From the manufacture of instruments to the engineering and mixing of audio recordings to the devices we use to listen, music goes through several technologies before it reaches our ears. And musical technologies, and the way we use them, are advancing at a rapid pace.

image credit: David Macdonald /remixed


Alex Glowaski (@glowascii), Lifelong maker and scribbler. Hacker evangelist at Pinoccio and

Christian Calma Research coordinator with the Relman Lab at Stanford University.

Melina Uncapher (@neuromelina), Co-founder/CEO of nonprofit Institute for Applied Neuroscience; Stanford neuroscientist working to translate science into policy change.

Sterling Cooley Founder, Berkeley Ultrasound Inc.

Jamais Cascio (@cascio), Investigator of the plausibly surreal. Writer, Speaker, Futurist, and IFTF Distinguished Fellow.

Reality + Tech

On September 17th, IFTF convened its most recent gathering in our +tech series. Reality +Tech brought guests into direct contact with 4 companies defining the cutting edge of augmented and virtual reality. The format emphasized experiential demos and networking; our core ideology underlying this event was some technologies have to be experienced to be understood…you can’t talk about the power of VR or AR until you’ve seen it yourself.

Each of our 30 guests had the opportunity to try each demo in the intimate setting. The demos were:


Jaunt delivers a completely new way to present and experience video media with the first full-stack hardware and software solution for cinematic VR.  Jaunt enablies omnidirectional 3D cinema experiences.

The Demo: Jaunt provided demos on the Oculus Rift showing several clips of cinematic VR content demonstrating a variety of the many applications of their technology.

Sense Earth:

SenseEarth renders a view of our cities reduced to their blueprints and 3D renderings— the bare geometry of gargantuan human constructs of buildings, roads, and infrastructure.  Explore the world by entering your desired address and then seeing it in 3D.

The Demo: Empowered by the Oculus, SenseEarth offered guests the freedom explore the world in first person.  Guests viewed never before seen perspective of their neighborhood, re-acquainted themselves with local eateries and places, and soared wayward to visit distant lands.  As one guest put it, “It felt like I was superman.”


Meta’s augmented reality glasses enable users to see the physical and holographic worlds merge through a 3D stereoscopic display in real size, depth and parallax. Meta makes you feel like Tony Stark in real life- capable of seeing and controlling the virtual juxtaposed over the real.

The Demo: Guests were guided through their paces with Meta’s dev kit, experiencing such things as picking up and grasping virtual objects, popping virtual balloons, and typing their names on virtual keyboards floating before their eyes.


Matterport is an end-to-end platform for 3D scanning places, processing the data, and then transforming the data into a completely immersive and interactive 3D rendering of the place, using real photos.

The Demo: Using the Oculus, guests explored a mind-blowingly photorealistic canyon that had been captured using Matterport’s 3D scanning cameras.



Adam Levine (@GamerAndy), founder of Let’s Talk Bitcoin, one of the most widely respected commentators on Bitcoin.

Joel Dietz (@fractastical), one of the most prolific commentators on digital currency trends and founder of Greenz.

Tim Swanson (@ofnumbers), author of Great Chain of Numbers: A Guide to Smart Contracts, Smart Property, and Trustless Asset Management.

Vitalik Buterin (@VitalikButerin), inventor of Ethereum, commonly called “Bitcoin 2.0″.


George Zisiadis a San Francisco based artist and designer. His unique projects playfully re-imagine people’s relationships to their environments and to themselves. When not creating, he does freelance creative work and regularly speaks at universities, conferences, and companies on topics involving creativity, urbanism, art, and design.

Mike Howard & Nobie Redmon founders of Hedwig, a drone-delivery company targeting densely populated student campuses, which was the product of Startup Weekend 2013. Hedwig proposed the use of QR-codes and payload equipped drones, partnering with off-campus businesses to provide a fast and novel customer delivery experience.

Tim O’Brien designs, builds, flies and goes adventuring with multi-rotors of all shapes and sizes. He has been building quadcopters and active in the community for 5 years now. A graduate of NC State EE and CPE programs, he’s built and flown everything from the ground up: frame designs, transmitters, protocols, and flight control systems.

Andreas Raptopoulos founder and CEO of Matternet, launching a new paradigm for transportation using a network of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. Previously founded FutureAcoustic, a venture that developed a new platform for music that listens and reacts to the user’s environment.


Rachel Kalmar Data scientist at Misfit Wearables

Rachel wrangles noisy data and tries to quantify anything and everything she can. A Stanford neuroscience PhD, she’s spent over a decade using data to explain, predict and influence behavior. She is active in the Bay Area hardware community and runs Sensored, a 1000+ person meetup group for people working on sensor devices and applications ( Rachel is an alum of the, Singularity University, and Rock Health, and her favorite hashtag is #geekparadise.

Sean Ness Business Development Director at IFTF

A self-described nerd growing up, Sean read all he could about science as a kid and immersed himself in maps for hours at a time. He also set his chemistry set on fire a few times, took junior high computer classes on a TRS-80, and was on his high school ecology team. After earning a BS in polymer science with a minor in chemistry from Pennsylvania State University, Sean ping-ponged between research organizations including Forrester Research and scrappy software start-ups like ComputerWire before joining IFTF in 2004. In 2006, Sean co-founded the STIRR Network, a group that helped catalyze early-stage entrepreneurial activity in Silicon Valley and beyond, through 2009.

Mike Liebhold Distinguished Fellow at IFTF

Mike brings to his role as principal technologist at IFTF a wealth of experience gained in a series of top jobs at high-profile tech companies. He has been a visiting researcher at Intel Labs, a senior consulting architect at Netscape Communications, vice president and chief technology officer at Times Mirror Publishing, a senior scientist at Apple Computer, and administrative director for the Systems Research Group at the Atari Sunnyvale Research Laboratory. Mike was principal technology policy adviser to Apple’s chairman and was Apple’s principal contributor to the national dialog on the National Information Infrastructure, including cable TV, video dial tone, digital advanced television, and HDTV.

Kristin Neidlinger SENSOREE founder, future concepts designer

Kristin crafts phenomenal technology to enhance and expand physical embodiment. She has a background in dance, kinetic costume design, and in physical therapies as a Dance Medicine Specialist. With her MFA in Interaction Design from California College of the Arts, 2010, she became curious as to how wearable computers could be therapeutic, emotive, and enhance our sensory experience. This is wear she began SENSOREE therapeutic Kristin is honored to have her work presented by tech conferences, galleries, and fashion shows — on the runway at CES, presented at NASA, and currently on exhibit with Futurotextiles 3.


Cory Kidd (@coryk), CEO and Founder at Intuitive Automata, a pioneer in social robots.

Mima Geere (@mimageere), Physician and Founder of ResultCare, a new tool to aid in diagnosis for healthcare professionals.

Raphael D’Amico (@raphdamico), Interaction Designer and Prototyper on Jawbone‘s UP team, previously design lead for Massive Health.

Frank Chen (@frankchn), Developer for Amazon Web Services and scholar of Human Computer Interaction.

Alex Grey Founder of Somaxis, creator of MyoLink wireless muscle sensors.