AR/VR Staff

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Harvard Innovation Labs Staff Support

Our technology-focused Assistant Director, Phil, is available to advise ventures working in the AR/VR space:

 Philip Greenwald

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Philip is the assistant director of technology at Harvard Innovation Labs. He leads technology programming and advises student and alumni entrepreneurs on software development and building new technologies. He is passionate about business empowerment and enabling people to bring an idea to reality without outsourcing every aspect of the development and details.

Phil has worked with aspiring CEOs and young professionals from Boston to Korea to bring minimum viable products (MVPs) to realization, secure business funding, and get accepted into accelerators such as Y Combinator and MassChallenge. Prior to teaching, Phil was the chief software architect on several large-scale web and mobile applications. Phil graduated from Vanderbilt University with a BA in Economics.

Expert Mentors

Aside from Harvard Innovation Labs staff, you can also connect with our experienced experts and entrepreneurs who have focused on AR/VR. Click here to schedule office hours.

Rus Gant

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Rus Gant is a well-regarded international 3D artist, computer engineer and educator. Currently Director of the Visualization Research and Teaching Laboratory at Harvard University and on the teaching faculty at Tokyo’s Showa Women’s University, he is currently pursuing work in the future of real-time 3D computer graphics and virtual reality. He is also the Lead Technical artist for the Giza 3D project at Harvard reconstructing the pyramids, temples and tombs on the Giza Plateau in Egypt in virtual reality. For more than 40 years he has applied his visualization skills to work in computer science, archaeology and museology for some of the world’s leading museums and universities. As a Fellow at the MIT Center for Advanced Visual Studies and as a Fellow at the Center for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University he has created and developed new techniques in 3D graphics, virtual reality and digit

Chaki Ng

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Chaki Ng is an innovation executive at Viacom. Currently, he leads Viacom NEXT which does R&D in emerging areas including VR+AR, IoT and AI. Previously he was SVP Product for brands like MTV, VH1 and CMT and launched 15 apps (iOS/Android/XBOX) and responsive sites with hundreds of millions of video streams annually and covering properties like MTV News and Video Music Awards shows. He co-founded and sold Interactive Constructs, a 70-people adaptive eLearning platform company that powered innovative web products such as Read180 for top publishers (Scholastic, Harcourt, Pearson) that have combined over a billion student/teacher page views annually. Chaki holds PhD and SM degrees in Computer Science from Harvard, MBA from MIT Sloan and BS in CS from Northeastern. His academic research includes sensor networks, market design and pervasive computing. Some of his projects are at www.chaki.com.

Ruben Pinchanski

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Ruben (HBS-93) is a hands-on eCommerce builder who works closely with CEOs and leaders of retail companies, VCs, and startups to help land the airplane. His experience expands close to two decades, (since 1995) and has been instrumental in the building, optimization, and execution of solutions for startups and several of the nation’s top retailers and direct marketing organizations.

Ruben serves as an Entrepreneur Fellow at General Catalyst Partners Venture Capital, continues his passion building eCommerce businesses, and advises startups
Skills & Expertise: Development of eCommerce ventures; Exploring VR/AR ventures. Creative/user experience and technical execution; logistics and fulfillment solutions; customer care/service; CRM; digital marketing. Industries: consumer, retail, luxury, fashion.
Interests: World Travel, fitness, and chocolate. Ruben grew up in Costa Rica and is a rain forest fan.

Teaching Assistants

The AR/VR Studio has four Teacher Assistants who support students working in the studio, can share knowledge of the AR/VR industry, and will train and teach the use of the tools and resources in the studio.

Qi Xiong

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Qi is a Master of Design Studies (Technology concentration) candidate at Harvard University Graduate School of Design. As a former architect, he specializes in the application of digital technology as analysis and form generation in the field of architectural design. During his studies at the GSD, his researches and projects focus on immersive representation methods (e.g. VR and AR) in design, gaming, and human-computer-interaction. He developed a wide set of knowledge and skills through his long-term practice with various popular hardware platforms.

Yan Liu

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Yan is a first year student in the MDes (Master in Design Studies) program at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Before coming to GSD, she worked in several Landscape Architecture/Urban Design/Consulting firms in Singapore, Boston, Paris, and Hong Kong for almost two years. She has a strong design background and experience in different types and scales of design including architecture, landscape, urban, product, lighting, fashion, AR/VR and so on. Her expertise in 3D modeling, scenario design, Unity and design thinking will bring you to a new Visual Reality world.

Jasmine Roberts

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Jasmine Roberts is an engineer and designer with focus in computer vision, augmented reality and projection mapping. She is currently working towards her Masters Degree in Design Studies in Technology at Harvard University and pursuing research at the MIT Media Lab. She holds a Bachelor of Science from Columbia University and a Master of Science from UC San Diego. During her studies, Jasmine has participated in joint VR/AR workshops and conferences. She is currently developing augmented reality solutions using computer vision and geo-location for interacting with environments responsively.

Connor Doyle

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Connor Doyle is a UK based director and producer. He has worked in performance for over ten years, and has been on stage all around the world, on the West End in Billy Elliot, and in over twenty-five projects ranging from Television to Radio to Film. Over the last two years Connor has turned his attention to producing and developing Virtual Reality experiences that aim to tell stories that engage and inspire.

His most notable VR project to date would be filming the first ever educational course to be captured in VR at Harvard University – CS50: with over twenty-two hours of stereoscopic VR content with graphic overlays. He worked over the summer to develop a workflow for VR production and experimented with many 360 video rigs: GoPros, Sonys, Ricoh and also many 360 editing applications. Alongside this, he is a very active member in the VR community in Boston/LA/NY, he is currently a VR consultant on a Shakespeare VR series in LA (with CAA) and he is President of Harvard College’s VR Organisation – Convrgency. He is very excited to work with students who are interested in pushing the boundaries of creative content in VR and has experience in not only 360 video but standard film production as well.

Harvard AR/VR Student Alliance

The AR/VR Studio also supports the first student club officially associated with the Harvard Innovation Labs: the Harvard University Augmented and Virtual Reality Student Alliance, which is a university-wide student group officially recognized by the Harvard Graduate Council and the Harvard Innovation Labs.

The Student Alliance’s mission, supported by the Harvard Innovation Labs, is to build a community where students, staff, faculty, alumni, community partners, and industry leaders come together to discuss AR/VR opportunities and develop AR/VR solutions for the world. Collaboration efforts to provide opportunities for students from the expertise of each of the 12 Harvard schools and to support our members actively involved with projects, startups and labs on campus.

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[Photo Caption]AR/VR Alliance: Luna Yuan, Joanne Cheung, Qi Xiong, Peter Chen, Paul Xie, Hunter Lin, Derrick Hsu, Nathan Saucier, Jie Yin, Evan Brown, Ryan Lee, Dianne Lee, Alice Yang