Last week, we were watching a beautiful sunset over Downtown LA and talking about the bright future we see for AI. Why were we talking about machine learning and supercomputing over tequilas and tacos in the home of entertainment? Are we bringing the future Skynet or The Matrix to 4YFN this October?
In short, we will not be (we don’t think…). The truth is that Tinseltown has a strong and vibrant community dedicated to the fair and transparent application of AI that is optimistic about the future and has its roots in a diverse population concerned with keeping AI firmly human.
Last week on that Downtown rooftop we were sponsoring AI LA’s sold out Summer Party, along with 300 other guests.
There was a lot of networking, relationship building and all-round having fun. A highlight was a $10,000-value raffle and a give-away of tickets to MWC Los Angeles later this year. Entrants gave their best predictions for what they will be doing four years from now, including:
- Most Inspirational: I’ll keep grinding, and give back to the community
- Most Likely: We can finally stare at our phones non stop while autonomous vehicles drive us around
- Most LA: I will finally be empowered enough to order food at Cafe Gratitude. Grateful!
- Most Outrageous: Climate Change gives me waterfront property
- Most Funny: I’ll be locked up or knocked up
Fun aside, the event illustrated LA’s potential to take a real position of leadership in the development of AI. AI LA is a community of cross-disciplinary stakeholders with more than 5,000 members who represent the STEAM communities of the Greater Los Angeles area.
Almost everything the general public understands about AI comes from Hollywood – it is the wellspring of the most popular form science fiction: movies about dystopian futures where humans are enslaved by the machines they created.
But more than that, California is home to some of the leading academic and research institutions in the world and LA specifically turns out thousands engineers and entrepreneurs from top-flight universities like UCLA and USC every year.
The fairness of AI’s application depends largely on the diversity of the workforce creating it and the data being fed into it. Like us, AI can inherit our biases and diversity should serve as a check on that trend. LA is one of the most diverse cities in the United States, if not the world, making a worthy nursery for what could prove to be our most powerful invention yet.
With all of that in mind, LA is consolidating its position as a leading hub for AI and robotics. That’s why we will be talking about, discussing, challenging and exploring all aspects of AI at the upcoming 4YFN in Los Angeles in this October.
If you’re interested in finding out more about what Southern California has to offer the world Artificial Intelligence, join us at 4YFN LA, 22-24 October: https://www.4yfn.com/los-angeles/