Leonardo Art/Science Evening Rendezvous of 5 October 2017

Exploring the Frontiers of Knowledge and Imagination, Fostering Interdisciplinary Networking

Stanford, 5 October 2017
c/o Stanford University
Alway building - Room M114
Chaired by Piero Scaruffi

The LASERs are a national program of evening gatherings that bring artists and scientists together for informal presentations and conversation with an audience. See the program for the whole series. The event is free and open to everybody. Email me if you want to be added to the mailing list for the LASERs. Like previous evenings, the agenda includes some presentations of art/science projects, news from the audience, and time for casual socializing/networking.
Where: Stanford University, Alway building - Room M114
There should be ample parking in the structure on corner of Campus Drive West and Roth Way. (Stanford map)
Parking is mostly free at Stanford after 6pm.
Program (the order of the speakers might change):
  • 7:00-7:25: Maya Ackerman (Santa Clara Univ/ Computational Creativity) on "An Introduction to Computational Creativity" Can computers be creative? ... Read more
  • 7:25-7:50: Michael Snyder (Stanford, Co-Principal Investigator at the Center for Genomics) on "Transforming Health Care Using Genomics, Wearables and Big Data" New technology for personalized medicine can reduce the chances of developing certain diseases... Read more
  • 7:50-8:10: BREAK. Before or after the break, anyone in the audience currently working within the intersections of art and science will have 30 seconds to share their work. Please present your work as a teaser so that those who are interested can seek you out during social time following the event.
  • 8:10-8:35: Mikey Siegel (Consciousness Technologist) on "The Art and Technology of Human Connection" Towards technology-augmented meditation retreats... Read more
  • 9:00pm-9:30pm: Discussions, networking You can mingle with the speakers and the audience

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See also...
  • Other LASER series
  • Archive of past LASERs
  • Leonardo ISAST
  • Art, Technology, Culture Colloquia
  • ScienceSchmoozer
  • LAST Festival
  • Other recommended events
    • Maya Ackerman teaches in the Department of Computer Engineering of Santa Clara University and was previously at San Jose State University. She specializes in Artificial Intelligence, with an emphasis on Computational Creativity and Machine Learning. Her work has been featured on NBC News and New Scientist, and her research appears at top academic venues. She received her PhD from the University of Waterloo and was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Caltech and UC San Diego, followed by two years as an Assistant Professor at Florida State University.
    • Piero Scaruffi is a cultural historian who has lectured in three continents and published several books on Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive Science, the latest one being "The Nature of Consciousness" (2006). He pioneered Internet applications in the early 1980s and the use of the World-Wide Web for cultural purposes in the mid 1990s. His poetry has been awarded several national prizes in Italy and the USA. His latest book of poems and meditations is "Synthesis" (2009). As a music historian, he has published ten books, the latest ones being "A History of Rock and Dance Music" (2009) and "A History of Jazz Music" (2007). His latest book of history is "A History of Silicon Valley" (2011). The first volume of his free ebook "A Visual History of the Visual Arts" appeared in 2012. His latest book is "Intelligence is not Artificial" (2013). He has also written extensively about cinema and literature. He founded the Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous (LASER) in 2008.
    • Mikey Siegel is a robotics engineer turned consciousness hacker. He envisions a present and future where science and technology support psychological, emotional and spiritual flourishing. Where our devices not only connect us to information, but also connect us to ourselves and each other, acting as a catalyst for individual and collective awakening. He is currently teaching at Stanford University, founder of Consciousness Hacking, BioFluent Technologies,, and the Transformative Technology Conference. He received an MS in robotics from the MIT Media Lab.
    • Michael Snyder is the Stanford Ascherman Professor and Chair of Genetics and the Director of the Center of Genomics and Personalized Medicine. Dr. Snyder received his Ph.D. training at the California Institute of Technology and carried out postdoctoral training at Stanford University. He is a leader in the field of functional genomics and proteomics, and one of the major participants of the ENCODE project. His laboratory study was the first to perform a large-scale functional genomics project in any organism, and has developed many technologies in genomics and proteomics. These including the development of proteome chips, high resolution tiling arrays for the entire human genome, methods for global mapping of transcription factor binding sites (ChIP-chip now replaced by ChIP-seq), paired end sequencing for mapping of structural variation in eukaryotes, de novo genome sequencing of genomes using high throughput technologies and RNA-Seq. These technologies have been used for characterizing genomes, proteomes and regulatory networks. Seminal findings from the Snyder laboratory include the discovery that much more of the human genome is transcribed and contains regulatory information than was previously appreciated, and a high diversity of transcription factor binding occurs both between and within species. He has also combined different state-of-the-art "omics" technologies to perform the first longitudinal detailed integrative personal omics profile (iPOP) of person and used this to assess disease risk and monitor disease states for personalized medicine. He is a cofounder of several biotechnology companies, including Protometrix (now part of Life Technologies), Affomix (now part of Illumina), Excelix, and Personalis, and he presently serves on the board of a number of companies.

    Extended abstracts:

    Wearables and big data can be used for tracking and monitoring health in unexpected ways. Personalized medicine can allow us to assess a person's physiological state and reduce our chances of developing certain diseases via a combination of a person's DNA sequence, molecular monitoring and global data
    Computational creativity is an emergent field in artificial intelligence, centering on fundamental questions such as: What is creativity? Can computers be creative? Instead of using the computer as a tool, can it instead be an equal collaborator, or even an independent artist? The talk will discuss goals of computational creativity as well as present notable systems at the intersection of computing with visual art and music.

    Spiritual and religious traditions have historically cornered the market on paths to peace, connection, and wellbeing. Science and technology are truly ubiquitous and incredibly beneficial, but they do little to point us toward deep flourishing. With all of our digital connectivity, by many measures we are not getting any happier. What if we applied our incredible engineering capacity toward our inner world, not just to cure disease, but to self-actualization? What if we took an innovation approach to spirituality itself, and redesigned it for a modern secular world? What if tech that provided the benefit of 10,000 hours of meditation was as accessible as cell phones? The quality of our relationships is one of the biggest contributors to our overall wellbeing. Thanks to modern technology we are becoming increasingly connected, but we are also increasingly lonely and socially isolated. Something is missing. In this talk we will explore a three projects attempting to leverage modern technology to support deep and meaningful human connection. We will also discuss current work leading up to a one of the first technology augmented meditation retreats.

    Photos and videos of this evening


    The Stanford LASERs are sponsored by the Stanford Deans of Research; Engineering; Humanities & Sciences; Medicine; and Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences; Continuing Studies; and the Office of Science Outreach.