The Life Scientific: Michael Woolridge

Humans have a long-held fascination with the idea of Artificial Intelligence (AI) as a dystopian threat: from Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, through to the Terminator movies. But somehow, we still often think of this technology as 'futuristic': whereas in fact, it's already woven into the fabric of our daily lives, from facial recognition software to translator apps. And if we get too caught up in the entertaining sci-fi narrative around AI and the potential threat from machines, there's a more pressing danger that we overlook real and present concerns - from deep fakes to electoral disinformation. That's why Michael Wooldridge is determined to demystify AI and explain how it can improve our lives, in a whole host of different ways. A Professor of Computer Science at the University of Oxford, and the Director of Foundational AI Research at the Alan Turing Institute, Mike believes the most common fears around this technology are "misplaced". In a special 300th edition of The Life Scientific, recorded in front of an audience at London's Royal Institution (RI), Mike tells Jim Al-Khalili how he will use this year's prestigious RI Christmas Lectures to lift the lid on modern AI technology and discuss how far it could go in future. Mike also reminiscences about the days when sending an email was a thrilling novelty, discusses why people love talking to him about the Terminator at parties, and is even challenged to think up a novel future use of AI by ChatGPT... Presenter: Jim Al-Khalili
Producer: Lucy Taylor
Audio editor: Sophie Ormiston
Production co-ordinator: Jonathan Harris
19 Feb English United Kingdom Science

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