Press Release

Photo credit: Nasir Hamid

“We can only see a short distance ahead, but we can see plenty there that needs to be done.” —Alan Turing


The Fifth Conference on Artificial General Intelligence (AGI-12) & The Conference on the Impacts and Risks of Artificial General Intelligence (AGI-Impacts)

811 December 2012 Oxford, St. Anne’s College

The 2012 Winter Intelligence Conference is a landmark conference on artificial intelligence and the impacts it will have on the world. By bringing together at Oxford University leading AI researchers and philosophers, Winter Intelligence aims to address not only the mechanics, but also the safety, ethical, and sociological ramifications of artificial general intelligence. For this reason, the 2012 Winter Intelligence Conference is divided into two parts:

AGI-12: Technical talks covering theoretical aspects of AGI, and reports on current developments towards AGI systems.

AGI-Impacts: Rigorous discussion of the potential future risks, benefits and societal impacts of this emerging transformative technology.

On AGI-12, the AGI conference series chair Dr. Ben Goertzel notes: “The AGI conferences represent an effort to steer the AI field back toward its original goal of building thinking machines—that is, computer systems with human-like general intelligence. Most of the AI out there in academia and industry today is what Ray Kurzweil has called ‘narrow AI’—the production of AI systems displaying intelligence regarding specific, highly constrained tasks. These narrow AI systems can be very valuable—think Google’s search engine and self-driving cars, program trading on Wall Street, industrial robots and much more. But it’s even more exciting and important to work directly toward machines that can really think for themselves, autonomously and creatively. And that’s the focus of the AGI conference series.”

On AGI-Impacts, Professor Nick Bostrom, director of the Future of Humanity Institute, comments that “Where AGI is concerned, safety, ethics, and consideration of social impacts are essential ingredients in the mix. They cannot be sprinkled on later, as mere afterthoughts, but need to be carefully integrated during the field’s development. Ensuring that the eventual impact of machine intelligence will benefit humanity requires solving daunting problems, both technical and philosophical. This is more likely to happen if there is close collaboration between the best computer scientists, mathematicians, and philosophers.”

The Winter Intelligence Conference will feature leading international experts in this emerging and potentially radically transformative field, including:

  • Bruce Schneier: World-leading expert on computer security, cryptography, and their implications for real world engineering
  • Steve Omohundro: Founder of Self-Aware Systems, leading expert in machine learning, machine vision, and programming languages
  • Margaret Boden: Author of Mind as Machine, founding Dean of the University of Sussex’s School of Cognitive and Computing Sciences
  • David Hanson: President and Founder of Hanson Robotics, creators of Hanson Robokind
  • Angelo Cangelosi: Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Cognition at the University of Plymouth, leading expert in developmental robotics
  • Nick Bostrom: Director of the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford, 2009 winner of the Gannon Award for the Continued Pursuit of Human Advancement

For a full programme of AGI-12, see
For a full programme of AGI-Impacts, see

For registration (for one or both events), and accommodation at St. Anne’s College, please see:

For any queries please contact:

Many thanks to the kind sponsors of the Winter Intelligence Conference: Oxford University, AAAI, EUCog, Kurzweil AI, and Novamente LLC.