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Trust & Technology Initiative


Artificial Intelligence is rare. Artificial stupidity is more common. In the movies, robots can be terrifying. In reality, thinking machines are disrupting the world in ways that are even more disturbing than in Hollywood fantasies - but they also have the potential to change our lives for the better. In this talk, Dr Ayanna Howard will explore how biases are infecting the next generation of Artificial Intelligence, with profoundly negative effects for humans of all genders and races.  Drawing on cutting-edge research, and her own experience as one of the few Black women in the field of robotics, Dr Howard will also explore empowerment along with tools and techniques we can use as developers and users to mitigate our overtrust in these AI technologies.

Dr Ayanna Howard is an innovator, entrepreneur, leader, and international expert in robotics and AI. She is also the author of the best selling book - Sex, Race, and Robots: How to Be Human in the Age of AI. Currently, Dr Howard is Professor and Chair of the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology. In addition, she serves on the Board of Directors for the Partnership on AI and Autodesk.

Academic profile page at Georgia Tech

Prior to Georgia Tech, Dr Howard was at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory where she held the title of Senior Robotics Researcher and Deputy Manager in the Office of the Chief Scientist. Her research encompasses advancements in artificial intelligence (AI), assistive technologies, and robotics, and has resulted in over 250 peer-reviewed publications. At NASA, she worked on designing advanced technologies for future Mars rover missions. Now, she works on projects ranging from healthcare robots to developing methods to mitigate bias and trust in AI.  In 2013, she founded Zyrobotics, an education technology startup, which designs AI-powered STEM tools and learning games for early childhood education.

Dr Howard’s has been recognized as one of the 25 most powerful women engineers in the world by Business Insider and one of the Top 50 U.S. Women in Tech by Forbes.  She regularly advises on issues concerning robotics, AI, and workforce development.

The Zoom event if free to attend, but please register online to reserve your place - numbers are limited to allow for moderated Q&A after the talk.

Thursday, 12 November, 2020 - 15:00 to 16:15
Event location: 

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