GPS METRIC: 39.7486    -104.9478

The Gundersons at Café Sci2

What Do Robots Think About Consciousness?

Wednesday 29 June 2011, 6:30 PM, at Brooklyn's near LoDo Denver


About the topic

Get the flyer (Coming)





Dr. Louise F. Gunderson, President and CEO

Louise has broad range of educational accomplishments, including a Ph.D. in Systems Engineering from the University of Virginia, an MS in Environmental Science and a BA in Biology from the University of Colorado at Denver; as well as a BA in Chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley.

Her areas of expertise include the automatic extraction of information from complex data streams, geospatial analysis of satellite data, data mining, human preference forecasting, and predictive modeling of human behavior. She is the author of over 20 technical publications, including book chapters and archival journal articles. Along with James Gunderson, she has completed a technical book which was published by Springer-Verlag in late 2008.

Louise is the President and CEO of Gamma Two, Inc


Dr. James P. Gunderson, CTO and Cognitive Systems Architect

Jim has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Virginia, as well as a BS in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Colorado at Denver. He has been actively involved in researching machine based cognition for 20 years, and has focused on embedded intelligence since the late 1990's.

His areas of expertise include intelligent systems, robotics, embedded real-time systems, and planning in uncertain domains. He has been awarded several US and European patents for robotic systems, and is the author of numerous technical publications. In addition, he has been the session organizer for several conferences and symposia, and is the co-author (along with Louise Gunderson) of the recently released technical book "Robots, Reasoning, and Reification" on machine cognition and robotics.

Jim is the Cognitive Systems Architect at Gamma Two, Inc.

About the topic

BasilWe will begin by discussing the current state of the art of mobile robots, and will include a demonstration of our current robot Basil. Basil, while very capable, is a far cry from the robots we see on the big screen. One of the key differences is the apparent self-awareness of these fictional robots. From this starting point we will move into a discussion of self awareness and consciousness, looking at several stances held by ancient and modern philosophers, and artificial intelligence researchers.

This will lead to the legal and ethical ramifications of having a conscious robo.

Finally we will return to Basil, and ask him what he thinks about robotic consciousness.

Online resources:

Consciousness: Wikipedia has a useful discussion.

Robots and Ethics: An interesting source. And another, at National Geographic.

Legal Aspects: Robots and Responsibility from a Legal Perspective (PDF)

© 2004 Colorado Café Scientifique