Insights from Internet of Things Idea Exchange at the #DellLounge

The DellLounge was home to the first Carnegie Mellon University | Dell IoT Idea Exchange bringing together thought leaders from academia and industry to discuss data-driven innovation in the transportation and immersive experience spaces. Below find our roving reporter’s recap.



The ATX Spring Festival in Austin just wrapped up on March 15. And as expected, this year’s event delivered cutting-edge technologies and digital creativity through scores of presentations and idea exchange panels consisting of some of the brightest minds in emerging technology.

At this year’s event, Dell and Carnegie Mellon University co-hosted the “Internet of Things Idea Exchange” at the Dell Lounge conveniently located on San Jacinto Blvd, walking distance from the Austin Convention Center.

Attendees had access to several hands-on experiences, including a digital graffiti wall and a virtual reality station that took participants through an underworld journey of visiting marine mammals and learning about the harms of pollution. One of the stations also allowed participants to play doctor by strapping on some 3D glasses and using an input device to study the various human organs, including a full 3D model of a beating heart. Folks were also treated to a yummy taco bar, while networking with Dell team members, panelists and other attendees.

There were two idea exchange panel discussions. The first panel focused on the concept of ‘Smart Transportation’ hosted by Ari Lightman from Carnegie Mellon University.

The panelists shared perspectives and ideas across a host of transportation challenges related to driver safety & well-being, autonomous self-driving cars, and even touching on movement of cargo containing perishable goods. The common theme was about improving the overall quality of life for individuals and efficiency realized by using smart sensors, data and real-time analytics for all types of vehicles on the road. The discussion also included state and local policy considerations to help drive positive change and TXDoT traffic and road management innovation opportunities.

The second panel discussion titled ‘Immersive Experience & Entertainment,’ was hosted by our very own Bryan E. Jones, vice president of Marketing at Dell. Jones opened by suggesting IoT is “all about insights.”  A variety of perspectives were shared by the panelists ranging from IoT use cases in Hollywood storytelling to hazardous work conditions requiring real-time data to improve safety.

Some of the panelists touched on the notion of a “solution looking for a problem,” in cases such as Google glasses. Other panelists chimed in by emphasizing the need to address “cultural and psychological” considerations. Panelist Nick Coronges, CTO at R/GA, pointed out that if you create a “really great emotional experience,” then it will drive demand for immersive technologies leveraging IoT.

Jason Shepherd, Director of IoT Strategy at Dell, touched on Dell’s approach and how we’re looking for sensible ways to distinguish between necessary alerts via devices vs. information overload. It’s all about useful, relevant, and actionable information – tying it back to Jones’ opening remark: it’s all about insights.


Shakil ChoudhuryShakil Choudhury is a senior program manager & strategist at Dell and has been with the company for 10 years.

Choudhury is an accomplished leader with extensive experience leading complex business initiatives and overseeing large-scale programs & global PMOs.

Choudhury played a key role in Dell’s expansion into the Solution Selling space. He has held a variety of roles across Dell Services, Enterprise Sales Operations, Commercial eCommerce, and other areas.

About the Author: Konstanze Alex