wise guy

Brainy PBS host and celebrity author visits Houston for mindful event

David Eagleman returns to Houston this month. David Eagleman/Facebook

Not many researchers have ever compared brain function to drug dealers, but then, not many researchers are David Eagleman. Much like charismatic astronomer Neil deGrasse Tyson, Eagleman brings hefty and brainy topics to a conversational and digestible level.

The globally renowned neuroscientist, TV host, and best-selling author will visit Houston to discuss his latest book, Livewired: The Inside Story of the Ever-Changing Brain. The event is produced by The Progressive Forum and will take place at Congregation Emanu El (1500 Sunset Blvd.) at 7:30 pm Thursday, April 28.

Tickets are available online or by calling 800-514-3849 and also at the door on event night. General admission tickets range from $45 and $70; reserved seats and speaker reception are $150. All ticket purchases include a free copy of Livewired.

This is a homecoming of sorts for Eagleman, who attended Rice University and Baylor College of Medicine. Since then, he has become a leading — if not the preeminent — voice on all things brain and neuroscience, covering sensory substitution, time perception, vision, synesthesia, and even the intersection of neuroscience with the legal system — a task he undertakes with the University of Houston.

He is perhaps most recognizable as host and writer of the PBS and BBC television series The Brain, which has been nominated for an Emmy. Penning books The Runaway Species, The Brain, Incognito, and Wednesday is Indigo Blue, Eagleman has written a bestselling fiction, Sum, which has been translated into 32 languages, turned into two operas, and named a Best Book of the Year by Barnes and Noble.

Eagleman also pens pieces for myriad publications and frequently appears on national radio and TV programs and has hosted a TED Talk.

His lab has launched several companies, including Neosensory, a firm that uses haptics for sensory substitution and addition, according to his bio.

“The Progressive Forum is pleased to welcome a great mind with Houston roots,” said Randall Morton, its president, in a statement. “As an undergraduate at Rice, he majored in British and American literature, then earned his PhD in neuroscience at Baylor College of Medicine.”

David Eagleman will appear at Congregation Emanu El, 1500 Sunset Blvd. at 7:30 pm Thursday, April 28. For tickets and more information, visit The Progressive Forum.

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This article originally ran on CultureMap.

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Building Houston

 
 

Fluence Analytics has exited to a multinational Japanese engineering and software giant. Image via FluenceAnalytics.com

A Houston company that provides analytics solutions within the chemicals industry has exited to a Japanese company.

Yokogawa acquired Fluence Analytics Inc. in a deal announced today. The terms of the deal were not disclosed and, effective immediately, the company operate as Yokogawa Fluence Analytics. Jay Manouchehri, who joined the company in 2022, will continue to serve as CEO of the entity.

“Combining forces with Yokogawa Electric enables us to capture the full value of our unique data sets, and we can't wait to deliver this added value to our customers," Manouchehri says in a news release. "Together, we will enable autonomous operations and digital transformation in the polymer and biopharma industries."

Founded in 2012 in New Orleans, Fluence Analytics moved to Houston in 2021 following a $7.5 million venture capital raise led by Yokogawa Electric Corp., which has its North American headquarters in Sugar Land.

The company's technology — automatic continuous online monitoring of polymerizations (ACOMP) product — provides real-time analytics solutions to polymer and biopharmaceutical companies worldwide. According to the company, its ACOMP product is the only commercially available system that can measure and analyze multiple polymer properties in real time, which leads to an improved system and less energy consumption and waste.

“Polymers are used in nearly every aspect of modern society in the form of plastics, rubber, paint, and so on," says Kenji Hasegawa, a Yokogawa Electric vice president and head of the Yokogawa Products Headquarters, in the release. "Combining Fluence Analytics' ACOMP system and other technology with our industry know-how will enable us to work with our customers to digitalize and automate polymerization processes that are currently monitored and adjusted manually.

"This will assist customers to improve worker safety, profitability, and environmental performance. We also plan to apply this technology to polymer re-use. We believe this is truly a game-changer for the industry,” he continues.

Fluence Analytics offices in Stafford, just southwest of Houston and has a team of 25 employees. Last fall, Fluence Analytics won in the Hardtech Category of the Houston Innovation Awards.

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