Speaker: Barney Pell

Barney Pell, founder and CEO of Powerset, a semantic search engine set to launch this month, spoke about the paths toward AGI. He emphasized that most AI research has not been devoted to general intelligence, due to a variety of reasons.

What framework will be required for the development of AGI? Pell suggested that we are in a fundamentally different stage of AI development, where success in the industry can eventually drive further funding and development. While the industry has until now been focused on expert systems and vertical markets, the industry is rapidly transitioning to more general solutions.

Regarding Powerset, Pell said the company is developing conversational user interfaces and natural language search capabilities. They expect to read and parse every single sentence on the web, while allowing people to interact with the results using natural language.

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Richard Leis

Richard Leis is a fiction writer and poet, with his first published poem forthcoming later in 2017 from Impossible Archetype. His essays about fairy tales and technology have been published on Tiny Donkey. Richard is also the Downlink Lead for the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) team at the University of Arizona. He monitors images of the Martian surface taken by the HiRISE camera located on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter in orbit around Mars and helps ensure they process successfully and are validated for quick release to the science community and public. Once upon a time, Richard wrote and edited the science and technology news and commentary website Frontier Channel, hosted the RADIO Frontier Channel podcast, and organized transhumanist clubs. Follow Richard on his website (richardleis.com), on Goodreads (richardleis), his Micro.blog (@richardleis), Twitter (@richardleisjr), and Facebook (richardleisjr).