Bridges Lectures Series - Minds In Machines - October 17, 2018

St. Jerome's University
Oct 17, 2018 07:30 PM (EDT) 

Event Details

Arithmetic, geometry, music and astronomy were at one time linked under the umbrella of “the liberal arts.” However, recent decades have seen the increasing separation of these fields. As university programs become more specialized, the gap widens and the respective approaches and lexicons of Arts, Science, and Mathematics grow increasingly distant. The Bridges Lecture Series aims to rediscover points of affinity among academic disciplines.

The metaphor of the bridge captures the spirit of our endeavor: to bring these fields back into productive dialogue; to raise questions that are essential to scholars in Arts, Science, and Mathematics; and to provide specialists and non-specialists alike with compelling and enriching information that uncovers the possibilities and opportunities that exist on the bridge between disciplines. Our guiding goal is to coax audiences out of their intellectual comfort zones, and to transcend narrow discipline-specific avenues of academic inquiry.


In past seasons, the Bridges Lecture Series has hosted scholars of Architecture, English, Fine Arts, History, Music, Philosophy, Politics, Religious Studies, and Sociology in addition to Mathematicians. Last season we added scientists to the roster, and several of our upcoming lectures will feature teams of Arts- and Science-based speakers.


Lectures take place at the St. Jerome’s University Academic Centre in the 300-seat Vanstone Lecture Hall, with live streaming available on YouTube for those who cannot attend in person.


With the continued support of our partners, we look forward to providing you with another exciting season. We look forward to your participation at our first lecture of the 2018-19 series, taking place on Wednesday, October 19, 2018 and featuring Chris Eliasmith and Paul Thagard.


Bridges Lecture Series Organizing Committee Members

Benoit Charbonneau            Alysia Kolentsis                Paul Craig

Minds in Machines: Comparing Biological and Synthetic Intelligence

The incredible explosion in the power of artificial intelligence is evident in daily headlines proclaiming big breakthroughs.  What are the remaining differences between machine and human intelligence?  Could we simulate a brain on current computer hardware if we could write the software?  What are the latest advancements in the world's largest brain model?  Participate in the discussion about what AI has done and how far it has yet to go, while discovering new technologies that might allow it to get there.


Do I need a ticket?

Our  ticketing system will issue you a ticket that we require you to present (electronically/hard copy) before entering the lecture hall. When you register your participation using the "Tickets" system to the right, our event support staff use this information to arrange for reception food service and to help anticipate seating  requirements.  When registrations exceed available seats we will begin a waiting list for this event and will notify you of other seating/viewing options.

Your registration in advance of each lecture is greatly appreciated.


November 21, 2018 - Movement within art and math and where it takes us


The Bridges Lecture Series organizers gratefully acknowledge the ongoing support of our partners:

St. Jerome's University
University of Waterloo, Faculty of Arts
University of Waterloo, Faculty of Mathematics
University of Waterloo, Faculty of Science
Fields Institute


Chris Eliasmith (Neuroscience)
October 17, 2018
University of Waterloo
Paul Thagard (Philosophy/Cognitive Science)
October 17, 2018
University of Waterloo
Edward Burger (Mathematics)
November 21, 2018
President, Southwestern University, Georgetown
Victoria Star Varner (Fine Arts)
November 21, 2018
Southwestern University, Georgetown


St. Jerome's University
290 Westmount Road North Waterloo, ON N2L 3G5 CA


Minds In Machines - Oct. 17

Organizer Details

St. Jerome's University

Federated with the University of Waterloo