The ADAPT Centre for Digital Content Technology showcased the future of intelligent systems in Dublin’s Croke Park on Tuesday. The event was organised by the Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) and supported by ADAPT, which is led from Trinity College Dublin.
The event was opened by Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten, who expressed the government’s recognition of digital technology’s ever-increasing value to our economy. This sector has, according to the Minister, “become ever more prevalent and embedded in everyday life”. Naughten also confirmed that the government intends to increase investment in research and development to 2.5% of Ireland’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). ADAPT Centre Director Professor Vincent Wade echoed these sentiments, saying: “This age of digital engagement requires much more than digitally enhancing traditional business processes; it requires a reframing of how businesses operate globally.”
Also speaking at the showcase, Dr Ruth Freeman, Director of Strategy & Communications at Science Foundation Ireland praised the Adapt SFI Research Centre for its innovation. The work of the centre, she explained, helps both companies and individuals reap maximum benefits from intelligent solutions by helping to detect fraud, manage risk and personalise education programmes.
The showcase was aimed at organisations looking to reach their potential through digital solutions such as artificial intelligence. Digital ‘assistants’ were among the novel pieces of technology the 200 attendees had the opportunity of experiencing first-hand.
Other highlights of the showcase included the ‘Sarcastic Twitterbot’, a programme which can distinguish sarcastic remarks from those with a literal meaning, and ADELE, a form of artificial intelligence which can participate in personal, engaging conversation with its users.
The event’s theme was Intelligent Systems, where computers are programmed to react ‘intelligently’ to new situations with 30 next-generation technology projects presented. Perhaps the most popular among them was the display of how the future of technology as imagined in Steven Spielberg’s 2002 film, ‘Minority Report’ has now become a reality in 2016, despite the film being set in 2054. The ‘Virtual Reality Minority Report’ allows users to interact with financial data in an entirely novel way, using only an iPhone with Google Cardboard or Samsung Gear.
The ADAPT Centre receives €24m in funds from the Irish government as well as an additional €26m from industry partners such as Microsoft, Paypal and Huawei.