Artifical Intelligence: How did we get here and where are we going?

BCS (Bedford), SGAI, IET

DateTuesday 21 Feb 2017



Tavistock Suite, The Park Inn Hotel, 2 St Mary's Street, Bedford MK42 0AR

SpeakerProfessor Max Braemer, University of Portsmouth.

Photo Professor Bramer joined the small Artificial Intelligence (AI) research community in Britain as a part-time PhD student in the early 1970s, just in time to see the field virtually wiped out in this country following a very hostile report to the main national funding agency.

AI techniques have become near-ubiquitous in recent years, often under other names such as Recommendation Systems, Intelligent Robotics, Conversational Agents or Big Data. It is now possible to discuss the idea of a machine possibly becoming intelligent in respectable circles and AI has gone from being dismissed as of no value 40 years ago to being denounced today as a possible threat to the survival of our species.

In this talk Professor Bramer will give a personal and highly selective view of the history of this important field and he will look at some of the ways in which AI is now in everyday use and some recent high-level applications, together with the issues of legal liability some of them raise. Finally he will consider some alternative possible AI futures and to what extent the warnings that are now being made about AI by some prominent people are justified.


Max Bramer is Emeritus Professor of Information Technology at the University of Portsmouth. He is Chair of the British Computer Society Specialist Group on Artificial Intelligence (SGAI) and Vice-President of the International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP), a consortium of around 50 national and international IT societies, including the BCS and the ACM. He is also a Chartered Fellow of the BCS.

Professor Bramer has been actively involved in the AI field since the early 1970s. He has led or supervised many AI projects since then, mainly in Knowledge Based Systems and the area that is now known as Data Mining or Big Data. He has written extensively on AI and other topics with over 200 publications, including many books and edited collections of papers. He has also presented well over 100 external lectures, seminars, etc. on a variety of topics, principally concerning Artificial Intelligence and the use of computers in education, including lectures in Denmark, Canada, Holland, Spain, Japan, the Republic of Ireland, the former Yugoslavia, France, Germany, Greece, Bulgaria, Poland, the United States, China and Australia. The third edition of his book 'Principles of Data Mining' is scheduled for publication in January 2017.

18:30 Registration, refreshments and networking
19:00 Guest speaker - Professor Max Bramer
20:00 Opportunity to network and talk to the speaker


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