Roboticist and inventor James McLurkin will share his research and insights into the future of multi-robot systems or "swarm robotics" during his keynote session at IPC APEX EXPO® 2014 on Wednesday, March 26, in Las Vegas.

In his presentation, McLurkin will explore how multi-robot systems can serve humanity by handling dangerous, dirty and dull jobs for which humans are inherently ill-suited. He will also provide an entertaining look at how his childhood obsessions with LEGO® bricks and Star Wars® fueled his passion for engineering.

Inspired by the complex group behaviors found in ants and bees, McLurkin's work focuses on developing software and programming techniques for teams of autonomous robots with populations ranging from 10 to 10,000. His research group at Rice University has one of the largest collections of robots in the world.

"My goal is to understand where intelligence comes from, how it works and how to construct artificial intelligence in real robots," says McLurkin.

A sought-after speaker, McLurkin lectures extensively to diverse audiences ranging from elementary school students to professional engineers at leading companies. He has degrees in electrical engineering and computer science from MIT and University of California, Berkeley, and is pursuing a Ph.D. in computer science at the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at MIT. In addition to serving as assistant professor in Rice University's computer science department, McLurkin consults on mechanical and engineering projects, and has worked with clients such as Walt Disney Imagineering, Sensable Technologies and MicroDisplay Corp.

McLurkin's presentation is free to all registered IPC APEX EXPO attendees. The conference and exhibition will run March 25–27, 2014. Standards development meetings, professional development courses and other show activities will take place March 23–27. Access to the exhibit hall is free to pre-registrants, a savings of $35 on-site. For more information on IPC APEX EXPO, visit www.IPCAPEXEXPO.org

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