Complexity beteween hype and history – Arianna Borrelli

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

“Complexity beteween hype and history” by Arianna Borrelli (TU Berlin). Abstract: Speaking about the history of computing, Michael Mahoney stated  that "hype hides history" (2005) and, indeed, the same could be said of the history of complexity. Between the 1980s and the early '90s the study of complex systems and related areas (deterministic chaos, nonlinear systems) …

Life from scratch – Gabriele Gramelsberger

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

Abstract: For more than a decade, scientists have been exploring the transition from non-living to living entities in order to create life from scratch, i.e., to move chemically from protoplasm to protocells and finally to artificial organisms. Today, synthetic biology aims to genetically engineer life from scratch, such as the synthetic Mycoplasma mycoides JCVI-syn3.0—an artificial …

Robot, a Laboratory “Animal”: Producing Knowledge through and about Human-Robot Interaction – Andrei Korbut

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

Abstract: The lecture focuses on the use of robots (primarily humanoid) in robotics laboratories to produce knowledge about human–robot interaction (HRI). Robotics is a large and diverse field, but with the recent development of artificial conversational systems and the increasing availability of human-like machines, HRI is now one of the fastest growing and most dynamic …

Neuromorphic Computing: Inspiration from the Brain for Future AI Technologies – Emre Neftci

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

Abstract: The importance of understanding the principles of brain computation and incorporating them into artificial systems is often considered necessary to advance AI technologies. However, the recent advent of large, "Foundational" vision and language models casts doubt on this assumption, as recent AI architectures differ considerably from the brain. Yet, the human brain consumes far …

Art’s Mediation as Remediation: On Some Artworks and their reuses of Toxic Materials – Esther Leslie

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

There is so much toxicity and contamination in the world. It is incontestable that vast parts of nature are poisoned, ailing or in retreat, and under threat. We live amongst poisoned materials.  Drawing on the various ways in which Adorno and Benjamin addressed both the assault on nature, in the name of progress, and the possibility …

Plea for the Political Philosophy of Engineering and Technology – Carl Mitcham

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

Abstract: My thesis is that discussion of ethical and other issues in the philosophy of technology needs to be complemented with political philosophy. Development of the thesis takes place in three parts. Part one notes the absence of political philosophy in the first, classic European period in the philosophy of technology. Part two reviews developments …

Towards an Ecology of Technoscience – Massimiliano Simons

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

Abstract: New emerging sciences and technologies - such as AI, synthetic biology, or robotics - are too often discussed in isolation. As a result, little attention is paid to the potential commonalities and ways in which they can inform each other. In this talk, I want to focus on aspect of what many of these …

Flowers for Agouti: Epigenetics and the Genealogy of Uplift – Ben Woodard

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

Abstract: The notion of uplift has a science-fictional and social justice connotation: it is the raising up of one species by another as well as a historical (and often racially codified) way of speaking of how one group raises itself up above limiting structural conditions. While these notions seem disparate they in fact have a …

Bio-inspired Materials and Dreams of Inspiration – Michael Friedman

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

Abstract: Materials are found at the very center of our life, situated in the complex zone between nature and society. In the recent decades, new discoveries in the natural sciences and in the materials sciences have enabled to develop new materials, so called 'active materials' and ‘Bio-inspired Materials’. These new materials are considered as entities …

Distilled, Extruded, Suspended: Lessons in Lifelikeness from the Metabolism of Mass Production – Hannah Landecker

RWTH Aachen University - Super C - Generali Saal 639 Templergraben 57, Aachen, Germany

Keynote “Politics of the Machines” Conference Abstract: This talk is about quite ordinary matters, such as the prevention of perishability in rubbers and oils, and how one makes a non-dairy creamer that lasts without refrigeration. Yet these are also extraordinary matters. The harvesting and remobilization of metabolically powerful objects and processes proceeded apace in the …

On the Origin and Development of Scientific Concepts: Light Rays and Lines of Force – Friedrich Steinle

Stadtpalais/Online Theaterstraße 75, Aachen, Germany

Abstract: In studying the historical dynamics of scientific knowledge, concepts constitute central objects. Their study, however, poses difficulties and challenges that have to do with their specific character as basic components of scientific thought: Much as in everyday life, they are constantly used but scarcely addressed as such. While we speak about chairs, cats and …