Norwich Cathedral science talk on Artificial Intelligence
A Brave New World beckons in which machines with artificial intelligence will bring great benefits to humanity. But these exciting technologies also raise some serious ethical questions as Professor John Wyatt will explain on October 3 at the annual Science and faith in Norfolk Cathedral lecture.
How do we understand the uniqueness of human beings if machines are increasingly able to behave like us? For example, if we can build robots with apparent emotional intelligence and sensitivity, is it appropriate for them to become our companions, friends and lovers? How do we set limits and boundaries on the use of artificial intelligence in developing relationships with children, adults and the elderly?
From a religious perspective, how should we, as humans, view ourselves and our relationship with intelligent robots? Might new forms of artificial intelligence force us to re-consider the relationship between humanity and God? In what ways will the introduction of intelligent machines challenge our traditional values and perceptions?
On Wednesday October 3, Professor John Wyatt will visit Norwich to give a public lecture addressing such questions, explaining his hopes and fears about the impact of artificial intelligence on society over the next few decades.
Professor Wyatt is a very distinguished speaker with a wide range of interests in biomedical ethics and the social implications of new forms of technology. He is Emeritus Professor of Ethics at University College London, and author of the book Matters of Life and Death: Human dilemmas in the light of the Christian faith. He is currently leading a research project into the social impact of artificial intelligence and robotic technology at the Faraday Institute in Cambridge.
He will argue that it is important for Christians to identify and defend the unique status and importance of human beings. Christian thinking sees self-giving love between people as the highest expression of our humanity. We should be cautious of any reductionist or utilitarian interpretation of what it means to be human.
The lecture will take place in the nave of Norwich Anglican Cathedral on Wednesday October 3 (7 – 8.30pm) and is suitable for a non-specialist audience. All are welcome – of all faiths and none. No booking is required. There will be a bookstall and a retiring collection.
This is the tenth annual Cathedral Lecture organised by Science and Faith in Norfolk, a local group affiliated to Christians in Science. Previous lectures have included many distinguished scientists seeking to explore the relationship between science and faith, such as: - Professors Tom McLeish; David Wilkinson; Denis Alexander and John Polkinghorne.
For further information, contact: Professor Nick Brewin, Secretary, Science and Faith in Norfolk: 07901 884114 firstname.lastname@example.org. There is more information on-line (https://sites.google.com/site/scienceandfaithinnorfolk).