Loading Events
  • This event has passed.

Join us January 25th for an in-depth look at some of the technology trends inside creating a smarter city: energy efficiency, environmental quality, traffic, safety, increasing return on investment/home value. IoT is one of the fastest growing technology sectors here in Chicago, connecting multiple facets of devices and technology in both the home and business markets. With publicly known products like Amazon Echo, Google Home and Nest Thermostat people are slowly being introduced to the idea of having various devices around them connected to the internet.

We’ll start the evening with a small demo day from various companies and non-profits in the Chicago area, showcasing research and consumer products. There will then be a moderated panel discussion with experts from all aspects of the Smart City movement in Chicago.


Chad Curry

As Managing Director for NAR’s Center for REALTOR® Technology, Chad Curry investigates emerging technologies, educates NAR members & the public through presentations, webinars, blogs and podcasts, and manages the development of products for use by members. He’s presented to REALTORS® on the national, state and local levels. Chad is also a Board Member for the Real Estate Standards Organization, where he works to streamline real estate transaction technology.

Currently, Chad’s work is focused on research and development of smart home devices, iBeacons and wearables as well as renewable energies. Specifically, he is investigating how these trends will impact the real estate industry and benefit members. They’ve set up CRTLabs, focused on testing and developing devices for the home to help improve quality of life. He is a member of the Internet of Things Council and is part of the Research Workgroup. Chad currently lives in Chicago with his family where he enjoys music, art, soccer and travel.


Christopher Coté is a software engineer with a passion for hardware.

He is the Lead Lab Engineer for the National Association of Realtors’ R&D Lab, CRT Labs (https://crtlabs.org)

Prior to joining NAR Chris ran his own software development and consulting company.

He was a lead engineer for the Obama 2012 campaign and has helped found and build several startups around the Chicago area.

Christopher has always found himself driven to create sustainable and efficient systems, whether that’s for massive political campaigns, growing food or controlling and monitoring the built world.

This experience has given him a unique insight into how technology and the built world coexist in society today and will continue to evolve into the future.

Jon Thacker, Ph.D., has been working with embedded networking devices for the past 10 years. Recently he joined SparkMeter as the Director or Research and Development, where he is working on the next generation of communication protocols and hardware for their low-cost metering solution. SparkMeter provides a fully managed electrical metering solution for underserved markets with the goal of providing sufficient, robust, and affordable energy for all. Jon is a contributor to RIOT OS, an open source operating system for IoT. Outside of technology, he spends his time racing and instructing on sailboats.

Douglas Pancoast A graduate of the University of Kansas School of Architecture and Urban Design and Cranbrook Academy of Art, architect Douglas Pancoast has worked for firms including Richard Meier and Partners, 1100 Architect, BlackBox Studio at SOM, and agency.com. His work has been shown in the Chicago-based exhibitions Art in the Urban Garden, Mystique: Space, Technology, and Craft and Speculative Chicago; and in Scale at the Architectural League of New York and the National Building Museum, Washington, DC. His projects have been featured in Architectural Record, Architecture, A.P.+, and The Architectural Review, and in the book Young Architects: Scale. Pancoast has lectured widely on his own work and on the topic of trans-disciplinary education, and has served as a guest critic at such institutions as Columbia University , Illinois Institute of Technology, University of Illinois at Chicago, and Parsons School of Design.

Current interests include examining how large, public data sets (economic, environmental, social, cultural, civic) are a context for creative practice. Pancoast is a co-investigator for the NSF grant supported Urban Sciences Research Coordination Network, an award meant to build inter-institutional collaborative research capacity around the subject of “big data” for social benefit. Since 2012 Pancoast has been a frequent co-investigator in the newly established Urban Center for Computation and Data (http://www.urbanccd.org/index.php), specifically providing architectural knowledge, and visualization expertise for a network of associated projects groups in Chicago including Open City (http://opencityapps.org/#about). Recent projects include the Array of Things (https://arrayofthings.github.io/) – a city scaled collection of environmental sensors deployed in Chicago providing data on city conditions for the Chicago Open Data Portal.

Derek Eder is a civic technologist and one of the leaders of the open government community in Chicago. He is founder and partner at DataMade, a company that tells stories and builds tools with data, co-founder of Open City, a collective that makes civic apps to to improve transparency and understanding of our government, and organizer for the Chi Hack Night, Chicago’s premier weekly event for building civic technology with open data.