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ITU planning ‘world’s first press conference featuring humanoid social robots’

The International Telecommunications Union’s upcoming AI for Good Global Summit will include what the organization says is “the world’s first press conference featuring humanoid social robots”.

At this “unprecedented media event”, nine robots and their creators will be available for questions from reporters in Geneva, Switzerland on 7 July.

Over 40 specialized robots demonstrating capabilities ranging from fighting fires and building houses to providing healthcare and farming sustainably will also be on display during the full event running from 6 to 7 July at the International Conference Centre Geneva (CICG).

Robots scheduled to meet with reporters include: ​

  • Beonmi – the world’s first fully functional general-purpose humanoid robot (Beyond Imagination)
  • Nadine – one of the world’s most realistic humanoid social robots (University of Geneva)
  • Sophia – first robot Innovation Ambassador for the United Nations Development Programme (Hanson Robotics)
  • Geminoid – ultra-realistic humanoid robot from Japan (Hiroshi Ishiguro)
  • 4NE-1 – one of the world’s most advanced cognitive humanoid robots designed to collaborate with humans (Neura Robotics)
  • Ai-Da Robot – first ultra-realistic robot artist (Aidan Meller)
  • Grace – the world’s most advanced humanoid healthcare robot (SingularityNET)
  • Desdemona – the rockstar robot of the Jam Galaxy Band
  • Ameca – one of the world’s most lifelike humanoid robots (Engineered Arts)

The AI for Good Global Summit will demonstrate how new technologies can support the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in areas such as combatting the climate crisis and bolstering humanitarian response.

Generative AI and human-machine collaboration will be key themes of discussion in view of the recent surge in public interest in AI resulting from the release of large language models such as ChatGPT and other generative AI tools.

The event will emphasize networking to build new projects, calls to action, and partnerships. It will feature talks from thought leaders as well as demonstrations of state-of-the-art AI solutions that could achieve global scale with the support of the international AI for Good community.

AI for Good’s show floor will include AI-inspired performances and artwork, with highlights this year including the global premieres of Jojo Mayer’s “Me/Machine” real-time AI drumming performance with Harry Yeff’s (REEPS100) “AI and The Machine-Inspired Voice” performance.

The event will also host the final round of the AI for Good Innovation Factory where start-ups from around the world will pitch their AI solutions to advance the SDGs.

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Lila Ibrahim – Chief Operating Officer, DeepMind
  • Yuval Noah Harari – Historian, philosopher, and bestselling author of “Sapiens” and “Homo Deus”
  • Orly Lobel – Warren Distinguished Professor of Law, University of San Diego, and author of “The Equality Machine” (The Economist’s “best book of 2022”)
  • Stuart Russell – Professor of Computer Science at University of California, Berkeley, and author of “Human Compatible: Artificial Intelligence and the Problem of Control”
  • Joanna Shields – Group CEO, BenevolentAI, Former UK Minister for Internet Safety and Security
  • Alessandra Sala – Senior Director of AI & Data Science, Shutterstock, and President, Women in AI
  • Babak Hodjat – Chief Technology Officer for AI, Cognizant
  • Sophia Kianni – Iranian-American climate activist, Executive Director of Climate Cardinals and, at 20 years of age, the youngest member of the UN Secretary-General’s Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change
  • Andrew Zolli – Chief Impact Officer, Planet
  • Ebtesam Almazrouei – Director of the AI-Cross Center Unit at Abu Dhabi’s Technology Innovation Institute
  • Iker Casillas​ – Former football goalkeeper, Real Madrid, FC-Porto, and Spain National team
  • Ali Agha – Group Leader at the Autonomous and Robotics Systems Division of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech Center for Autonomous Systems and Technologies

AI for Good is organized by ITU, the UN specialized agency for information and communication technologies, together with 40 partner UN agencies. The summit is co-convened by the government of Switzerland.

Participation in the AI for Good Global Summit is free of charge and open to everyone. Capacity is limited and early registration is encouraged.

The AI for Good Global Summit 2023, co-convened by Switzerland, is supported by Immersion4 (Diamond sponsor), Technology Innovation Institute (Diamond sponsor), Monash Data Futures Institute at Monash University (Gold sponsor), ZTE (Gold Sponsor), Rohde & Schwarz (Networking sponsor) and Kuka (Networking Sponsor).

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