In December 1983, Luc Steels founded the first AI Lab on the European continent, right here at the VUB. Forty years later, on December 19th 2023, friends, colleagues, former students and long-time supporters of the lab came together at the Royal Library of Belgium to celebrate four decades of AI research.
Prof. Steels took his audience back to the early days of the lab with an exhibition titled “Science on the Edge of Chaos – The AI Avant-Garde in the 1990s”. He then charted a path for the future with his inaugural lecture for the Calewaert-leerstoel on “Fundamental research in AI today”: despite many mature applications of AI, Prof. Steels insists there is still so much we do not understand about intelligence. What is the role of self-reflection and awareness, for example, which appear to be higher levels of intelligence than what we see today in AI today? It is clear that the AI Lab will not be short of work during its next 40 years.
Watch the aftermovie of the anniversary event here.