North Design Labs takes on projects out of the spectrum of normal everyday engineering, and sometimes reality. By being able to tap into the brightest minds across engineering, science, fabrication, and art we are able to conceive and realize projects in impossible time frames.
To stay at the front of the wave of innovation requires being on top of the latest technology and in touch with the people making it happen. Here we crack the door and give you a unusual peak into the people, the tech, and even the process of innovation.Read More
Mike North, PhD
Dr. North is involved in all aspects of our technological charge from inventing new materials and technologies in a cleanroom, to creating cutting edge prototypes on Discovery Channel’s Prototype This! Brimming with enthusiasm, Mike’s engaging personality makes him an energetic and charismatic science and technology advocate inspiring grade-schoolers to CTOs.
A master of the “nano” world Mike earned a Ph.D. and Masters in Materials Science and Engineering, as well as graduating summa cum laude in Mechanical Engineering, from U.C. Santa Barbara. During his graduate work, he designed and fabricated the world’s first adhesive that can be turned on and off electronically. It was inspired by biological adhesives systems, such as the one used by geckos. Mike’s scientific interests delve into specialties such as biomimetics, micro/nanofabrication, nanoscale microscopy and micro/nanomechanical characterization. His investigations in these areas have been published in leading scientific journals, including Advanced Materials and Nature.
On the nano-artistic side, Mike uses cutting-edge nanofabrication techniques to create innovative micro- and nano-sculptures. Expanding on techniques used to make computer chips, he photolithographically patterns surfaces, carves out material using biased plasmas, deposits other materials such as titanium or platinum, and even grows nanostructures using a self-developed cleanroom technique. The entire final structure ends up being smaller than the width of a human hair (and Mike concedes that it probably requires a Ph.D. to understand what all this means!). Mike also has a knack for building large-scale avant-garde art, such as fire-breathing 90-mph dragon ships or classic BMWs loaded with computer-controlled fire-blasting cannons.
Dr. North’s unique mix of engineering and artistic skills combined with his charismatic personality led him to masterminding builds on Discovery Channel’s Prototype This! Responsible for co-developing the concept of the show and developing concepts for new inventions, Mike would then lead teams of crack inventors, builders and engineers to create never before seen spectacles of engineering. To accomplish these projects at breakneck speeds Mike pulls from all areas of science, technology and manufacturing. The inventions range from 6 legged all terrain vehicles to 30 foot tall waterslide simulators to lifesaving fire fighting equipment. Go to www.discovery.com/prototypethis for more info.
Currently Mike is bringing innovation to the toy industry as the Chief Technology Officer at Nukotoys, a company that is redefining the toy category by blurring the line between online and offline.
ReAllocate is the project Mike is most passionate about. As Founder and CEO Mike is uniting the engineering and design communities to provide design and engineering support to those at the base of the economic pyramid. “By ReAllocating just a little bit of our expertise and time we are able to have a huge impact on the lives of those that need it most,” said North during his keynote at the recent Global Humanitarian Technology Conference.
Mike commonly speaks on the status and future of science and technology, and is a stand out motivational speaker. He is involved in several start-ups, educational programs, ongoing research, and is a technical advisor to several non-profits.
Delivering one-of-kind talks on innovation, prototyping, engineering, and education, Mike North inspires audiences with his work ranging from developing and hosting Discovery Channel’s Prototype This! to technical founder of the toy company Nukotoys to founding ReAllocate–using resources with purpose.
Based in the heart of San Francisco, Mike has his finger on the pulse of innovation, giving audiences a glimpse into the future. At the same time, Mike is a hands on practitioner, making his talks squarely grounded in reality.
If you are interested in Dr. North speaking at your event please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The World Bank flew Mike to give a talk at TEDxSendai, Japan, on how to build more resilient communities.
Le Web invited Mike to give a talk in Paris on The Internet of Things.
The Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology had Mike speak on how to bring innovation into the education system.
Flowserve hired Mike to inspire leadership with a talk on The 7 Healthy “Ins” of Intrapreneurship.
“As a speaker, Dr North delivered a keynote at the Rapid 2009 conference that had the audience laughing, cheering and hit home a profoundly inspiring message specific for our audience. He delivered an all inspiring message to the young high school students who attended RAPID in our Bright Minds program. His background reinforced additive manufacturing is a rewarding and fun profession to enter.”
-Gary Mikola, Rapid Event Manager
Mike North was our Key-Note-Speaker in 2012 for our annual High-Tech Gruenderfonds portfolio-event called “Family Day” which is one of the Top-VC-events in Europe with more than 800 participants. His Key-Note was tailored for the audience, inspiring and entertaining. The audience was excited about his speech and we received fantastic feedback about it.
-Simon Schneider, Investment Director, High-Tech Gründerfonds Management GmbH
- Ashley Ater Kranov, Former Managing Director, ABET
Past Speaking Engagements:
American Society of Safety Engineers Inspirational Keynote, Your future, don’t play it safe. 2013, Chicago, Il.
Marketing 50, address to 90 Chief Marketing Officers of the largest global corporations. 2013, New York, NY.
HATCHexperience, 2013, Bozeman, MT.
Return to Esalen, Prototyping Workshop, 2013, Big Sur, CA.
Innovate Berkeley Dinner, 2013, Berkeley, CA.
Catalyst Week, Downtown Project, 2013, Las Vegas, NV.
Flowserve, Inspirational Keynote on Intrapreneurship, 2013, Tucson, AZ.
Launch Silicon Valley, SVForum, Closing Keynote (following Ray Kurzweil and Guy Kawasaki), 2013, Microsoft Campus, Mountain View, CA.
Lucidity Festival, Plenary Address, 2013, Santa Barbara, CA.
Accreditation Board of Engineering Technology Annual Symposium, Keynote Address, 2013, Portland, OR.
SXSW, 2013, Austin, TX.
LeWeb, 2012, Paris, France.
IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference 2012, Humanitarian Robotics, Seattle, WA.
Day of Tofu, October 2012, Hatch CoWork, Tokyo, Japan.
Fukushima High School, 2012, Fukushima, Japan.
TEDxSendai, 2012, Sendai, Japan: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5adBpmAx1Cc
SOCAP, Community Building Panel, 2012, San Francisco, CA.
TEDxBlackRockCity, 2012, Black Rock City, NV.
High-Tech Gruenderfonds Conference 2012, Keynote, Bonn, Germany.
International Development Conference 2012, Harvard Kennedy School, Cambridge MA.
Social Enterprise Conference 2012, Harvard Kennedy School of Government and Harvard Business School, Cambridge, MA.
ASME Engineering for Change 2011, Denver, CO.
IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference 2011, Closing Call-to-Action Keynote Address, Seattle, WA.
RAPID 2011, Iterative Design and Prototyping of a Brace for Treating Clubfoot, Minneapolis, MN.
RAPID 2011, Bright Minds Keynote Inspirational Address, Minneapolis, MN.
OnMobile The Mobile Venture Summit 2011, Redwood City, CA.
RAPID 2010, Bright Minds Keynote Inspirational Address, Anaheim, CA.
RAPID 2010, Bringing Video Games to Education-FAST, Anaheim, CA.
Solidworks 2010, Opening Session, Anaheim, CA.
RAPID 2009, Keynote Address, Society of Manufacturing Engineers.
Solidworks World 2009, General Session, Feb. 8-11, Orlando, FL.
Hilton Head 2006: A Solid State Sensor, Actuator and Microsystems Workshop, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, June 4 – 8, 2006
Max Planck Institute, December 7, 2005, Stuttgart, Germany
Transducers 2005,The 13th International Conference on Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems, Seoul, Korea, June 5-9, 2005
AMN-2, Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology, February 6-11, 2005, Queenstown, New Zealand
ISRS 04, International Student Research Symposium, December 20-22, 2004, IIT Madras, Chennai, India
Jawaharlal Nehru Center for Advanced Scientific Research, December 17, 2004, Bangalore, India
IMECE04, 2004 ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, November 13-20, 2004, Anaheim, California USA
ECS, The 206th Meeting of the Electrochemical Society, Joint Meeting, October 3-8, 2004 Waikiki, Hawaii USARead More