Blaise Agüera y Arcas How computers are learning to be creative
We're on the edge of a new frontier in art and creativity — and it's not human. Blaise Agüera y Arcas, principal scientist at Google, works with deep neural networks for machine perception and distributed learning. In this captivating demo, he shows how neural nets trained to recognize images can be run in reverse, to generate them. The results: spectacular, hallucinatory collages (and poems!) that defy categorization. "Perception and creativity are very intimately connected," Agüera y Arcas says. "Any creature, any being that is able to do perceptual acts is also able to create."
Oscar Schwartz Can a computer write poetry?
If you read a poem and feel moved by it, but then find out it was actually written by a computer, would you feel differently about the experience? Would you think that the computer had expressed itself and been creative, or would you feel like you had fallen for a cheap trick? In this talk, writer Oscar Schwartz examines why we react so strongly to the idea of a computer writing poetry — and how this reaction helps us understand what it means to be human.
Guy Hoffman Robots with "soul"
What kind of robots does an animator / jazz musician / roboticist make? Playful, reactive, curious ones. Guy Hoffman shows demo film of his family of unusual robots — including two musical bots that like to jam with humans.
Heather Knight Silicon-based comedy
In this first-of-its-kind demo, Heather Knight introduces Data, a robotic stand-up comedian that does much more than rattle off one-liners — it gathers audience feedback (using software co-developed with Scott Satkin and Varun Ramakrishna at CMU) and tunes its act as the crowd responds. Is this thing on?