Future Talks

All talks at Winchester Discovery Centre, Jewry Street 7.15 for 7.45 unless otherwise advertised. Licensed bar serving hot drinks, cakes and snacks. No charge to attend. Contributions welcome.

Mon 16th April 2018 – Dale Lane – IBM – “Can computers be creative? Using AI to design  new meals and dishes”

Artificial Intelligence is about whether computers can demonstrate intelligence. In this talk, Dale will look at one element of this – whether computers can be creative. This will be an introduction to our understanding of creativity, and a demonstration of some of the work that has been done to build creative computers.

Dale is a developer for IBM at the local offices in Hursley Park, working for several years on IBM’s artificial intelligence platform “Watson”.

Monday 21st May 2018 – Dr Alan Costley – “Faster Fusion: Fact or Fantasy?”

The need for carbon free sources of energy is well established and fusion power – often billed as safe, everlasting and potentially available to all – is one possible solution.  But experimental fusion devices are large and expensive and, in consequence, fusion is taking decades to develop.  Recent re-evaluations of the underlying physics combined with new emerging technologies are opening development paths based on much smaller fusion devices which will be cheaper and faster to build.  But are they feasible, will they work?  In “Faster Fusion: Fact of Fantasy?” we explore the answers.


Dr Alan Costley has worked in fusion for more than 40 years and published extensively in the field.  He has held senior positions at the JET project, Culham, and on the international ITER project in Cadarache, France.  He is now a consultant in the field working mostly for Tokamak Energy Ltd, a private UK company developing a faster route to fusion power.

Mon 4th June – Jediah Clark – “The driverless future: can we design vehicles to be our co-pilots?”

The ‘roadmap’ towards a driverless future remains unclear. In this talk, Jed will take you through the current challenges in autonomous vehicle technology, with a particular focus on what it means for us, as humans, to work with and trust our autonomous counterparts in the years to come.

Educated as a psychologist, Jed is now a member of the ‘Human Factors Engineering’ team at the University of Southampton working on his PhD. His research involves taking psychological concepts and applying them to driverless car in-vehicle technology. He is focusing on how to better the communication process between the automation and the driver in automated systems that require input from both human and vehicle (like that of aviation).

Monday 2nd July – Professor Jakub Bijak – CPC- University of Southampton, – ‘The Uncertain World of International Migration’

Monday 6th August – Robert Attwood – Diamond Light Source