Vivek Wadhwa, Donald MacDonald and Kalimah Priforce to headline at the Bay Area’s first ideas festival, Oct. 25-26


Vivek Wadhwa

Tech guru and academic Vivek Wadhwa challenges the common wisdom on innovation, architect Donald MacDonald designed the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge, and social entrepreneur Kalimah Priforce‘s specialty is the power and limits of technology for bringing change to disadvantaged communities. All three will be speaking at Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas, the very first ideas festival to come to the Bay Area.

Wadhwa, Vice President of Innovation and Research at Singularity University and Fellow at the Arthur & Toni Rembe Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University, will explain why “everything you know about entrepreneurship is wrong.”

MacDonald will be in conversation with commentator and journalist Felix Salmon, who, on hearing he would be getting a private tour of the new Bay Bridge prior to Uncharted simply tweeted “Creating Awesome!” They will discuss the symbolism and power of bridges. As well as designing the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge, MacDonald was the first architect to work on the design of the Golden Gate Bridge since its construction in the 1930s.

Meanwhile, Priforce will be talking about the power and limits of technology for bringing change to disadvantaged communities. The provocative subject of Priforce’s presentation? “Would an app have saved Trayvon Martin?”

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Kalimah Priforce. Photo: Nancy Rubin

In addition to Wadhwa, MacDonald and Priforce, there will be conversations on robotics, income inequality, mass extinction, the 2014 mid-term elections, creativity, the continuing relevance of the humanities, civil rights and much, much more during the two-day Uncharted festival, which is being produced by Berkeleyside. The festival includes lively hands-on workshops and a fabulous party with good food, wine and live music at the Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive.

Meet the many other fascinating speakers who will be at Uncharted, and register to attend at the Uncharted website. (Don’t delay: Early-bird discounts end Sept. 27.)

Uncharted is delighted to be partnering with the following sponsors: AutodeskPanoramic InterestsMechanics BankDeYoe Wealth ManagementBerkeley Repertory Theatre, GreenerPrinterUniversity of California BerkeleyBerkeley Startup ClusterDowntown Berkeley Association, and KQED.

Visit the Uncharted website for all information. Follow Uncharted on Twitter and on Facebook to keep in touch with new speakers and program information.

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  • bgal4

    “The provocative subject of Priforce’s presentation? “Would an app have saved Trayvon Martin?””

    sounds like the most uninformed title misappropriating an incident for sensationalism.

  • Tizzielish

    Does it seem odd to anyone else that berkeyside is “reporting” on their invented ‘fesitval of ideas’ as if it were an objective news story?

    And does anyone sincerely believe this is the first time Berkeley, home to UC Berkeley, has ever held an event focussed on discussing cutting edge ideas?


  • Tizzielish: The Uncharted festival is hardly “invented.” It’s happening on Oct. 25-26. Yes, we are bringing our readers news of the festival. Because we are organizing it and want as many of you to come as possible. If you know of another ideas festival in Berkeley, or in the Bay Area, please tell us about it.

  • oceanview neighbor

    “Does it seem odd to anyone else that berkeyside is “reporting” on their
    invented ‘fesitval of ideas’ as if it were an objective news story?”

    Doesn’t seem odd to me.

  • annonymous

    it feels very self-promoting to me and Berkleyside’s responses sound defensive. May want to re-evaluate this sort of expensive event in the future.

  • Yes, it is self-promoting.

    Berkeleyside is a business. Our core mission is to cover the news in Berkeley, and the response from readers and advertisers has been very good.
    But the news business is tough commercially. The issue for us, like many of our larger journalistic peers, is what related activities can we engage in that complement and — we hope — support our core mission.

    We think Uncharted is a key part of a path to a sustainable future for Berkeleyside. So we’re doing what we can to make it as successful as possible. That seems natural to me.

  • PragmaticProgressive

    Not odd at all. This is what entrepreneurs do. You should try it!

  • PragmaticProgressive

    You must be really easy to offend.

    I don’t agree with all of the editorial choices Bside makes, but I applaud their entrepreneurial drive.

  • PragmaticProgressive

    It’s a fine idea. Best wishes for a successful event!

  • PragmaticProgressive

    When I’ve hosted or organized charitable events, there are always people who complain about the cost, that it excludes people. These events and commercial ventures like Bside’s exist to make money. These people have to eat! And there are people with money to spend who want to have a special experience and are willing to pay for it.

    The New Yorker does the same thing. TED is another variation. People like this stuff and congrats to Lance for trying one here.

  • oceanview neighbor

    Oh brother. If I was “offended” by everything that was not of interest to me, I would spend way too much of my time and energy being offended. Why beat yourself up, move on, If this event is interesting to people, they will participate. If not, they won’t. Why do you spin your wheels unnecessarily?

  • oceanview neighbor

    Well, duh. Berkeleyside if putting it on. Why wouldn’t they promote it? Maybe you should go read the Patch. Or the Planet.

  • The_Sharkey

    How is it any different from them reporting on any of the other high-cost-of-admission events that happen in Berkeley? Should they stop reporting on anything that costs over $20 a head? Should they be forced not to cover events that they participate in or sponsor?

    It’s not hard to just ignore the story if you aren’t interested in it.

  • 2ndGenBerkeleyan

    “If I am not for myself, who is for me?”

    All credible news organizations would announce, promote and report on an
    event they sponsored or co-sponsored. Nothing out of line there.

    What perhaps rankles some, given the price point, is the vague focus on
    “income inequality.” For the next iteration, why not more explicitly
    court the interest of those most able to afford the ticket price?

    To wit:

    1) Secrets of tax exempt offshore trusts

    2) Which nations bank laws still provide a shield against IRS audits

    3) How to get the most out of your trust fund

    4) How to secure your inheritance

    5) How to shelter your assets

    6) How to manage your portfolio for high net worth individuals

    7) Real estate flipping

    8) Marrying up, how to move from the flatlands into the hills (freebie)

    9) Competitive yachting

    10) How to manage your nanny, housekeeper, groundskeeper and butler

  • Delilah Jones

    It sounds like a lot of fun. One can’t be sure of intelligent conversation when out for a walk. I like the idea of a venue of throwing around ideas with possibly informed people. I’d go if I had the bucks. They mention at the end of the article they also have a party with food, drugs and music.

  • Ed S.

    A 17 year old boy was shot dead walking home from the store. Show a little respect for him and his parents.

  • bgal4

    Show some respect for facts, TM was shot while beating a person in the head.

  • Ed S.

    The person he was in the fight with was a 29 year old man with a gun who got out of his car to follow him. I can make some presumptions, but I have no idea how that fight started. You can make some presumptions, but either do you. Whatever happened, the kid should not be dead. Show some respect for him and his parents.

  • bgal4

    ok so an app capable of identifying persons with a concealed carry permit might have alerted TM to choose a different target for his rage which would have “saved” him from his demise.

  • PragmaticProgressive

    drugs? what?