Luc Steels and Geraint Wiggins on And& festival in Leuven

On 3 May 2018 Luc Steels and Geraint Wiggins will give a talk on the And& festival in Leuven under the title Digital Immortality & AI & Creativity.

Luc Steels, together with Oscar Vilarroya, will discuss the question whether AI will lead to digital immortality. As artists who wanted to explore the ramifications of their work using artistic media, they wrote the opera Fausto that will be performed at the Summit. Fausto uses the ancient myth of Faust to explore a not too distant future where intelligent agents, mind uploading, brain-computer interfaces, and augmented reality have developed further. Will this lead to a kind of new 'transhuman' gnosticism where humans long for digital immortality by uploading their minds in the cloud? What happens when some of the intelligent autonomous agents operating in the cloud become malicious and want to seize human bodies to become embodied in the real world? This talk describes how they created this opera and what the broader societal repercussions are of the world view that the characters embody.

Geraint Wiggins talks about Creative Cities of the Future. In this talk, he revisits the concept of the creative city. Many cities are deemed creative, and many have a creative quarter – for example, Montmartre in Paris, SoHo in New York. But what this really means is a place where creative people live, not a place that is itself creative. In this talk, he looks at how the city itself might be creative, through the science and technology of computational creativity, and how that might benefit humankind.

Both talks will take place in the Maria Theresia College 2 in Leuven on 3 May 2018 at 11h. The opera will be performed at 20h in the Peiter De Somer Aulo, Deberiotstraat 24 in Leuven. Tickets for the opera are still available.