lecture image IT Eminent Lecture Series
Toward Cognitive Prostheses
Kenneth Ford, Institute for Human & Machine Cognition
Founder, Director
Coates Hall 155
June 05, 2009 - 02:30 pm
The emerging concept of human-centered (HCC) computing represents a significant shift in thinking about intelligent machines and, indeed, about information technology in general. Human-centered computing embodies a "systems view," in which human thought and action and technological systems are seen as inextricably linked and equally important aspects of analysis, design, and evaluation. From an AI perspective, the HCC framework is focused less on stand-alone exemplars of mechanical cognitive talent, and is concerned more with computational systems designed to amplify human cognitive and perceptual abilities. This approach results in systems that can be regarded as cognitive or perceptual prostheses, much as eyeglasses are a sort of ocular prosthesis. These systems fit the human and machine components together in ways that exploit their respective strengths and mitigate their respective weaknesses. Building cognitive prostheses is fundamentally different from AI's traditional Turing Test ambition -- it doesn't set out to imitate human abilities, but to extend them. This shift in perspective places human/machine interaction issues at the center of the subject. The "system" in question isn't "the computer," but instead includes cognitive and social systems, computational tools, and the physical facilities and environment. Thus, human-centered computing provides a new research outlook for AI applications, with new research agendas and goals.
Speaker's Bio:
Kenneth Ford is Founder and Director of the Florida Institute for Human & Machine Cognition (IHMC), an independent not-for-profit research institute. Ford is the author or co-author of hundreds of scientific papers and six books. Ford's research interests include: artificial intelligence, cognitive science, human-centered computing, and entrepreneurship in government and academia. He received a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Tulane University. He is Emeritus Editor-in-Chief of AAAI/MIT Press and has been involved in the editing of several journals. Dr. Ford is a Fellow of the AAAI. Dr. Ford has received many awards and honors including the Doctor Honoris Causas from the University of Bordeaux in 2005 and the 2008 Robert S. Englemore Memorial Award for his work in artificial intelligence (AI). In January 1997, Dr. Ford was asked by NASA to develop and direct its new Center of Excellence in Information Technology and to serve as Associate Center Director at Ames Research Center. In July 1999, Dr. Ford was awarded the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal. That same year, Dr. Ford returned to private life and to the IHMC. In October of 2002, President Bush nominated Dr. Ford to serve on the National Science Board. In 2005, Dr. Ford was appointed a member of the Air Force Science Advisory Board. In June 2007, Dr. Ford was appointed to the NASA Advisory Council and became the Chair in October of 2008.
Refreshments will be served.
This lecture has a reception.