The Woodruff School's annual Distinguished Lecture

The George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering Annual Distinguished Lecture was established in 1990 to honor an engineer who has made a significant contribution to society and to provide a forum for that person to interact with the Georgia Tech community.

Support for the lecture is made possible by the generosity of the late George W. Woodruff, an alumnus and influential Atlanta businessman, civic leader, and philanthropist. In September 1985, at the age of 90, Mr. Woodruff attended the ceremonies to rename the School of Mechanical Engineering in his honor.

This year’s lecture will be given by:

Dr. James Truchard

Cofounder, president, and CEO of National Instruments

Since Dr. James Truchard founded National Instruments (NI) in 1976, NI has worked to equip engineers and scientists with tools that accelerate productivity, innovation, and discovery. Prior to founding National Instruments, Dr. Truchard worked as the director of the Acoustical Measurements Division at the University of Texas Applied Research Laboratory. Dr. Truchard wanted to create a place to work that was fun and provided strong career paths for employees. As he often remarks, he “didn’t see a job I wanted [in Austin], so I created one!” Truchard and his management team have created an award-winning corporate culture that has been recognized as one of the top 25 "World's Best Multinational Workplaces" by the Great Place to Work Institute. James Truchard earned a B.S. and an M.S. in physics, and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences.

Mechanical Engineering - Leading the Way to Intelligent System Design

Today’s mechanical engineers are leaders in the design and development of intelligent systems. They have significant expertise in multi-disciplinary design and instrumentation as well as mechanical, thermal, fluidic, and biological systems. Mechanical engineers often team up with software designers, FPGA designers, analog and digital designers in order to bring an embedded product to market.

Any technology that can reduce or eliminate the need for these additional embedded system design resources will speed time to market and reduce development costs. In this talk, Dr. Truchard will discuss key technical challenges in the area of intelligent systems design. He will then describe how the integration of software and hardware technologies into a unified and open embedded system development platform will help to remove hurdles between simulation, prototyping, and deployment of intelligent systems. With this technical approach, mechanical engineers can continue their leadership and foster innovation for future systems.

Event Details


  • Wednesday, April 3, 2013
    1:00 pm
Location: MaRC Auditorium
Fee(s): Free to attend for all

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  • James Truchard

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