Upcoming Event

October 17

AI for Culturally Relevant Interactions

mediaX Forum
October 17th 2018 9:00am-3:30pm
Mackenzie Room, Stanford CA

Registration Required
Registration opens September 20th

The practical and responsible limits of artificial intelligence are still in their early stages of development.

A better understanding of the relationship between identity, culture and AI technologies can lead to dramatic improvements in how consumers, students and patients relate to information and to content, devices and services. A deeper understanding of cultural traditions, history, and relevance can have a broad and far-reaching impact on the interactive technologies of the future, particularly in conjunction with storytelling and narrative elements.

This mediaX Forum will convene academia and industry thought leaders in the emerging arena of cultural and societal interactions with big data, machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Our goal is to move the human-AI relationship forward by bringing industry trailblazers together with Stanford cross-disciplinary thought leadership to examine to evolve concepts, technologies and practice used to integrate culture and identity with artificial intelligence and robots.

This forum includes keynotes and panel presentations of horizon research, as well as the opportunity to explore challenges and opportunities through discussion between academic and industry Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning experts, coupled with practitioners seeking new solutions for society today and in the future.

Initial Questions to be considered:
*What cultural issues and concerns are critical for AI applications?
*How will consumers’ relationships to brands be shaped by culture in AI storytelling?
*How does culture influence perception of human rights and privileges in the digital world?
*How can traditions, histories, and collective experiences shape an individual’s experience of AI products?
*What elements of human culture can be emulated by artificially intelligent entities, particularly in a world of such varied human experiences?

This Forum is made possible by mediaX members and special contributions from:

IVOW, a mediaX member. IVOW is a group of multimedia storytellers and data scientists merging timeless principles of storytelling with Artificial Intelligence and culture, with a vision to build AI storytelling applications that harvest data on world cultures, history, and traditions to tag more meaningful datasets for machine intelligence.

Baidu, Inc., is a multinational technology company focusing on artificial intelligence and Internet-related services and products.

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Mackenzie Room
Jen-Hsun Huang Engineering Center
475 Via Ortega, Stanford, CA 94305


Adam Banks GSE

Adam Banks is a Professor in the Graduate School of Education and the Faculty Director, Program in Writing and Rhetoric. He’s a committed teacher. Midnight Believer. A Slow Jam in a Hip Hop world. Cerebral and silly, outgoing and a homebody. Vernacular and grounded but academic and idealistic too. Convinced that Donny Hathaway is the most compelling artist of the entire soul and funk era, and that we still don't give Patrice Rushen enough love. He’s a crate digger, and DJ with words and ideas, and believes that the people, voices and communities we bring with us to Stanford are every bit as important as those with which we engage here at Stanford.

Rama Akkiraju Panelist

Rama Akkiraju is a Director, Distinguished Engineer, and Master Inventor at IBM’s Watson Division where she leads the AI mission of enabling natural, personalized and compassionate conversations between computers and humans. In her career, Rama has worked on agent-based decision support systems, electronic market places, and semantic Web services, for which she led a World-Wide-Web (W3C) standard. Rama has co-authored 4 book chapters, and over 50 technical papers. Rama has over dozen issued patents and 20+ pending. She is the recipient of 3 best paper awards in AI and Operations Research.

Mariana Lin Panelist

Mariana Lin was the lead writer behind Siri, overseeing personality and voice internationally, and currently consults as Character Designer for Sophia of Hanson Robotics. She writes on the topic of AI writing in her column Artificial Intelligentsia in The Paris Review, and over the past 15 years, her writing has appeared in publications such as New York magazine, GQ, The Huffington Post, the Mississippi Review, and she has won awards for poetry and copywriting. She has varying proficiency in French, Chinese, classic Greek, ASL, LAMP, and is interested in the interplay of language, culture, and AI identity. She holds a BA from Swarthmore College, a JD from Berkeley Law School, and is an MFA candidate at Pacific University.

Cory Kidd Panelist

Cory Kidd is the founder and CEO of Catalia Health. The company develops a hardware and software platform that uses a combination of psychology and artificial intelligence to engage patients through interactive conversations. These conversations happen through mobile, web, and interactive robotic interfaces; together these interfaces create a relationship that can reach patients at any time they need support. Dr. Kidd has been working in healthcare technology for nearly two decades.

Davar Ardalan

Davar Ardalan, IVOW Founder and Storyteller in Chief. Davar has been a journalist in public media for 25 years, most of those at NPR News, where she designed stories anchored in multiculturalism and steeped in historical context. In 2015, her last position at NPR was senior producer of the Identity and Culture Unit. Realizing that there is a gaping hole in AI algorithms that will define our future stories, Davar created IVOW, whose AI software sifts through data on world cultures, traditions and history for modern consumer storytelling applications.

Albert Boyang Li

Albert Boyang Li is a Senior Research Scientist at Baidu Research, where he conducts research on Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. He's particularly interested in computational models for narrative structures, including visual and textual information. He believes story is a powerful tool for communication. His Computational Narrative Intelligence (CNI) aims to create intelligent machines that can understand and create stories, manage interactive narratives, and respond appropriately to stories told to them.