Marc Davis

Keynote Speaker and Co-Host,
Master’s Seminar: Critique + Pro Brainstorming Sessions – Marc’s new company

Marc Davis, visionary technologist and inventor, is a founding partner of Invention Arts. With a distinguished career of technology research and development at the MIT Media Lab, Interval Research, UC Berkeley, and Yahoo!, Marc’s thought leadership has articulated—often over a decade beforehand—how people, the web, and the world will be connected. For over two decades, Marc and his teams have done pioneering research and development in digital video databases and remixing, automated media production, multimedia information systems, computer vision, mobile and context-aware computing, mobile media, social media, and mobile and social advertising. With a radically interdisciplinary background, unique insight into the future of technology, media, and society, and the ability to develop and apply highly generative invention frameworks, Marc has transformed his breakthrough ideas into over 150 patent applications, as well as research prototypes and products.

Most recently, Marc was Chief Scientist and Vice President of Early Stage Products (ESP) for Yahoo! Mobile. At Yahoo!, Marc and his team invented and helped realize the future of mobile, social, media, monetization, and platforms. While developing a large portfolio of strategic and disruptive patents and internal prototypes, ESP worked with product teams on innovative products from Yahoo! Mobile such as Social Pulse that reinvents mobile communications by aggregating a user’s social networks and communications tools into a socially connected address book. Marc was also a key contributor to the Yahoo! Open Strategy (Y!OS) and the vision demo for the future of Yahoo! shown at CES 2008.

In 2005, Marc Davis worked with Yahoo! Inc. and UC Berkeley to launch Yahoo! Research Berkeley, which produced a number of breakthrough public prototypes in mobile media and social media: ZoneTag, context-aware mobile photo capture and tagging software; TagMaps, a collective map of human attention created by analyzing the millions of geocoded Flickr photos; Zurfer, a context-aware mobile photo browser; and Remixer, a web-based video remixing tool developed for the San Francisco International Film Festival.

From 2002 to 2006, Marc Davis served as Assistant Professor at the UC Berkeley School of Information where he directed Garage Cinema Research. Marc lead a multi-year Mobile Media Metadata research project that pioneered context-aware mobile media uploading, tagging, and sharing as well as context-aware face recognition. Marc was also a Co-Founder of the interdisciplinary UC Berkeley Center for New Media. From 1999 to 2002, Marc Davis was Chairman and Chief Technology Officer of Amova, Inc., a developer of media automation and personalization technology that developed patented personalized video advertising systems and formats.

From 1993 to 1998 at Interval Research, Marc led research and development teams in creating patented automatic digital video production technology that automated direction, cinematography, editing, and remixing. In recognition of his thought leadership in multimedia computing, in 1997, Marc was an invited contributor to the 50th Anniversary Edition of the Communications of the ACM, for which he wrote a vision piece about the next 50 years of media technology.

From 1990 to 1995, Marc did his doctoral work at the MIT Media Laboratory, where he developed Media Streams, an iconic visual language system for annotating, retrieving, and remixing digital video. At the MIT Media Laboratory, Marc Davis also co-founded the Narrative Intelligence Reading Group, which innovated interdisciplinary discourse at the intersection of literary and media theory, artificial intelligence, and media technology and design. In 2003, “Narrative Intelligence” was recognized by the National Academy of Sciences as one of its “promising areas for transdisciplinary work.”

Marc Davis earned his B.A. in the College of Letters at Wesleyan University, his M.A. in Literary Theory and Philosophy at the University of Konstanz in Germany on a German Academic Exchange Service Fellowship, and his Ph.D. in Media Arts and Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Laboratory.

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