"AI is super interesting. It's been developing so much and so fast. But what is the limit? If AI surpasses human capacity then where do we stand as humans?"
LONDON - The Long-awaited third edition of the acclaimed Meet AI Series took place at Cocoon Networks London on 10/08/17. Powered by the London-based startup Emotech and by Cocoon Networks, the event provided the audience with the latest insights and insider knowledge on the AI industry. Our Meet AI series bring together distinguished researchers of AI, robotics hardware engineers and product designers. These events allow attendees to learn about revolutionary AI approaches and to witness the move from AI theory to AI practice. Such sessions can motivate the audience to experiment with AI and, eventually, to start developing their own AI projects. Cocoon Networks London is proud to have hosted this enriching event.
Emotech is a London-based robotics startup committed to the improvement of relationships between humans and technology. Emotech is convinced that, as robots are becoming increasingly prevalent in our daily lives, more attention should be paid to a robot’s ability to both be empathic and to positively impact on its owner's lifestyle. This can only occur through innovative and efficient interactions. Emotech’s first product is Olly, a personal robot and smart-home hub able do develop an individual personality. Olly won four CES Innovation Awards for the following categories: Smart Home, Drones and Unmanned Systems, Home appliances and Home Audio-Video Accessorises. Olly’s AI engine is the result of the collaborations of neuroscientists and machine learning scientists. The robot’s personality develops based on the interactions it has with its owner.
Cocoon Networks is Europe’s first Chinese-funded networking platform and financial investment consultancy specialised in venture capital investment and technology transfer. Cocoon Networks’ wide range of services includes financial consulting, a business accelerator, co-working spaces and IP management. With its London-based headquarters and offices in four major cities in China, Cocoon Networks facilitates the creation of fruitful and lasting business collaborations between China and the European continent.
Patrick Tresset is a London-based artist who creates theatrical installations turning robots into painters. The robots used in the displays aim to be an evocation of ingenious humanness. Mr Tresset’s works build on computational systems able to impact on the robots’ behaviour, making them more creative and expressive. The systems used in these installations are the result of thorough research into human behaviour. In developing these robots, Mr Tresset considered not only the way artists can physically produce a painting, but also the ways humans interact with robots. Mr Tresset developed robots and autonomous computational systems able to produce a copious number of drawings, paintings and animations. In 2004 Mr Tresset joined Goldsmiths College, where he co-directed the Alkon-II project from 2009 to 2012. The aim of the project was to better comprehend what drives a sketching process. There, he also developed and taught a module in Creative Robotics. Mr Tresset has published research articles on the topics of computational aesthetics, social robotics, drawing research and AI. His work has been exhibited in association with major museums and institutions such as The Pompidou Center (Paris), the Museum of Israel, the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Seoul), the Prada Foundation (Milan). The installations have also been displayed at events such as Ars Electronica, Update_5, WRO2015, Merge festival. Mr Tresset gave an overview of the works produced by artists and computer scientists employing deep learning techniques. He also shared the findings of his latest research on the use of AI in the arts. This included examples of his work in different galleries and museums, where robots drew and painted faces or even other drawings.
Indeera Munasinghe is a computer scientist/software engineer with extensive experience in software design and development. As Software Engineer in MLP for Microsoft Reseach he took part in large-scale machine learning projects in machine vision. He obtained an MSc in Evolutionary and Adaptive Systems from the University of Sussex and he is now the Lead Software Architect at co-organiser Emotech. Mr Munasinghe is interested in finding out the way animal behaviour can enhance the design of machines, so as to render them more natural. Considering that our own specie evolved from primitive animals, Mr Munasinghe argued, one could comprehend how to build better and more intelligent machines by examining the intelligence of animals. In doing so he considered the way the brain, the body and the environment jointly shape 'intelligence'.
The presentations were followed by a short Q&A and by a networking session where attendees could chat with the speakers.
There was an overwhelming response from audience members. All parties involved are very grateful to those who came to the event and asked insightful questions or made enriching remarks. Here’s a few comments on the event:
"I have a background in psychology. My question is how will working with AI affect human beings and their self-identity?" - Bella
"The event was great. It provided the audience with an overview of what is happening in the industry at the moment. In addition it was a great opportunity to network with people from different backgrounds." - Yang