Pioneer a brighter future, today.

December 1-3, 2017
Princeton University

Technologies

Artificial Intelligence

ai

Enhanced interfaces

enhanced-interfaces

Nanoscale

nanoscale

Synthetic biology

synthetic-biology

Implications

Catastrophic and Existential risk

risk

Material Advancement

material-advancement

Space    Development

space-development

Economic and Social Change

change

Human Enhancement

human-enhancement
Because the world is changing. Fast.

The world is set to change drastically over the next several decades. Four technological trends in particular will cause unprecedented transformations. The spectrum of possible futures for humanity is wider than it has ever been – and the outcome depends upon our actions now. In light of this, what should we do?

This year’s Envision Conference brings together future engineers, scientists, programmers, entrepreneurs, business leaders, and policy makers from top universities around the world to collectively answer the question:

What can we do to pioneer a brighter future?

Envision Conference 2017 is centered around action. Throughout panels, debates, breakout sessions, an expo and career fair, and workshops, you’ll be thinking about solutions and strategies. The future is unpredictable and no solution will be perfect, but that doesn’t mean we should sit back and watch events unfold. It’s possible to act now in ways that maximize the likelihood of beneficial outcomes.

We’ll provide you with the pioneering individuals, organizations, and companies working on or proposing concrete solutions and strategies, and the space to engage with them. We count on you to do the rest.

Updates

More information on this year's conference coming soon...

Speakers

We have many more speakers yet to be announced!

Joanna Bryson

Natural and Artificial Intelligence researcher at University of Bath and Princeton University

    Kate Adamala

    Synthetic Biology Professor at University of Minnesota

      Joe Davis

      Researcher and Artist at Department of Biology, MIT

        Neil Harbisson

        Artist and Cyborg activist

          Patrick Henry Winston

          Professor of AI and CS @ MIT, Chairman @ Ascent Technology

            Robin Hanson

            Professor @ GMU, Research Associate @ Future of Humanity Institute

              Advisors

              Sebastian Seung

              Evnin Professor in Neuroscience, Professor of Computer Science and Princeton Neurosciences Institute

                Shirley Tilghman

                Board Member at Google, President Emerita of Princeton University, Professor of Molecular Biology

                  Andreas Mershin

                  Research Scientist at MIT Center for Bits and Atoms

                    Stephen Frey

                    Product Research at Kernel and Co-Founder at NeurotechX

                      Last Year's Conference

                      Meet our speakers and panelists

                      Last year's speakers

                      Andrew Zwicker

                      Head of Education and Physicist @ Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

                        Luke Nosek

                        Partner @ Founder's Fund, Co-Founder @ Paypal

                          Julia Bossmann

                          President @ Foresight Institute

                            Andrew Critch

                            Researcher @ Machine Intelligence Research Institute (MIRI), UC Berkeley

                              Philip Metzger

                              Co-Founder @ KSC-NASA Swamp Works

                                Gregory Stock

                                Icahn School of Medicine, Founder @ Signum Bioscience

                                  Susan Schneider

                                  Associate Professor @ Cognitive Science Program, University of Connecticut

                                    Robin Hanson

                                    Professor @ GMU, Research Associate @ Future of Humanity Institute

                                      Anders Sandberg

                                      James Martin Research Fellow @ Future of Humanity Institute, Oxford University

                                        Jeremy Kasdin

                                        Adjutant Scientist @ NASA’s WFIRST mission

                                          Sam Sternberg

                                          Doctoral Researcher @ Doudna Lab, UC Berkeley

                                            Roman Yampolskiy

                                            Director @ Cyber Security Laboratory, University of Louisville

                                              Riva-Melissa Tez

                                              Co-Founder @ Permutation Ventures

                                                Andreas Mershin

                                                Physicist @Center for Bits and Atoms, MIT

                                                  David Williamson

                                                  CTO @ Modern Meadow

                                                    Edwin Turner

                                                    Advisor @ Breakthrough Starshot and Astrophysics Professor @ Princeton University

                                                      Cosmo Scharf

                                                      Co-Founder @Visionary VR and @VRLA

                                                        Last year's schedule

                                                        1:00pm - 3:00pm
                                                        Registration

                                                        Venue: Carl ICahn Laboratory, Oval Lounge

                                                        Venue: Frist Center, Auditorium 302

                                                        The Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory is a world-class fusion energy research laboratory dedicated to developing the scientific and technological knowledge base for fusion energy as a safe, economical and environmentally attractive energy source for the world’s long-term energy requirements.

                                                        The field trip will include a guided tour of the laboratory and NSTX, the largest spherical tokamak reactor in the world, as well as a keynote speech by Andrew Zwicker, Head of Education at PPPL, on the Future of Nuclear Fusion.

                                                        Andrew Zwicker

                                                        Envision Entrepreneurship is a competition for the most innovative application of technology for large-scale impact. These can include start-ups, government projects, inventions, or corporate projects. Applications will be judged on impact, feasibility, downside mitigation, and technology. They can be but do not need to be executable by the applicant. The top 5 applications will have 10 minutes to present during Envision in front of a panel of judges composed of industry experts.

                                                        The top three will receive $2000, $1000, and $500 in prize money respectively.

                                                        Venue: Friend Center, Auditorium 101

                                                        9:30 am - 11:00 am
                                                        Panel: Prospects for Space Development and Extraplanetary Habitation

                                                        Will humanity become a space-faring civilization? If so, how soon? And how will this change human society? Panelists from industry, government, and academia will consider these questions from multiple perspectives.

                                                        Speakers:
                                                        Edwin Turner – Advisor at Breakthrough Starshot and Astrophysics Professor at Princeton University
                                                        Jeremy Kasdin – Adjutant Scientist at NASA’s WFIRST mission
                                                        Philip Metzger - Co-Founder, Swamp Works, NASA-KSC

                                                        Venue: Frick Chemistry Laboratory, Taylor Auditorium

                                                        Companies and labs from across the world at the forefront of rapidly developing disruptive technologies will present their latest breakthroughs and explain potential applications. This is a unique opportunity to understand and interact with the current cutting edge of technology and place the future in the context of the present.

                                                        Venue: Frick Chemistry Laboratory, Atrium

                                                        Can the vast potential of Artificial Intelligence be safely harnessed? Or do the risks outweigh the rewards?

                                                        Panelists Include:
                                                        Andrew Critch - Researcher at Machine Intelligence Research Institute
                                                        Riva-Melissa Tez - Co-Founder at Permutation Ventures
                                                        Robin Hanson – Professor at GMU and Research Associate at the Future of Humanity Institute
                                                        Roman Yampolskiy – Director of Cyber Security Laboratory at University of Louisville
                                                        Susan Schneider - Associate Professor at Cognitive Science Program at University of Connecticut

                                                        Venue: Frick Chemistry Laboratory, Taylor Auditorium

                                                        Three 15 minute presentations followed by 5 minutes of Q&A on three pioneering technological applications that will radically change the way our world will look like in the near future.

                                                        Confirmed Case Studies:
                                                        Cosmo Scharf: Virtual Reality - What if we could live in the Matrix?
                                                        David Williamson: The Future of Materials Crafting via Biotechnology
                                                        Andreas Mershin: Nanotechnology - Unlocking the Nanoscale

                                                        Venue: Frick Chemistry Laboratory, Taylor Auditorium

                                                        Participants will have the opportunity to interact over dinner with the Conference Speakers as well as Princeton professors who are active in the technologies of the conference.

                                                        Venue: Frick Chemistry Laboratory, Atrium

                                                        As we work to develop solutions to global challenges, VR offers an unprecedented space for design and collaboration. This workshop at StudioLab will provide an overview of ways to use VR for design, exploration, research and simulation. In addition to highlighting what’s on the cutting edge in the industry of commercial VR headsets and their potential applications, the workshop will feature a full-motion virtual reality (FMVR) system -- the Vizmove Walking Virtual Reality System – which combines the Oculus Rift with motion trackers to allow physical motion in 50 square meters of real space. Participants will be able to try out the system and experience some of the benefits it offers in terms of greater immersion, a more natural ability to engage in VR, reduced risk of motion-sickness and an increased sense of realism.

                                                        Princeton’s Nuclear Futures Lab (currently working in StudioLab) will also demonstrate the potential of VR for design and simulation by sharing its work on the use of VR to support innovation in nuclear arms control. The research team is using FMVR to develop facility architectures and verification protocols for treaties that do not yet exist. VR allows researchers to engage with questions that are otherwise impossible to address in an open environment, for example, inspecting nuclear warheads stored at military facilities while offering greater flexibility for design and brainstorming and eliminating the risk of experimenting in dangerous environments.

                                                        Audiovisual Piece for Fulldome and Virtual Reality

                                                        Morphogenesis (from the Greek morphê ‘’shape'' and genesis “creation” literally, "beginning of the shape") is the biological process that causes an organism to develop its shape. As a fulldome and virtual reality piece, which is inspired by the phenomenon of emergence in self-organized systems, Morphogenesis consists of the continuous transformation of fundamental geometrical patterns and uses them as the building blocks of an immersive space and a visual notation for the sound, during an audiovisual journey through different aspects of the physical and biological universe. As the common characteristics of emergence that can perceived universally, the audiovisual experience intends to emphasize the systemic interconnectedness over space and time of all natural dynamics and how these dynamics result to create novelty.

                                                        Credits:
                                                        Visual Artist: Can Buyukberber: www.canbuyukberber.com
                                                        Sound Artist: Yagmur Uyanik: www.soundcloud.com/yagmuruyanik

                                                        In this talk hosted by the Princeton 3D Printing Club, we will discuss the past, present, and future of 3D printing. Our focus will be on affordable desktop fused deposition modeling (FDM) printers, especially in regards to challenges that educators and entrepreneurs face when using these empowering (and occasionally frustrating) tools of manufacturing.

                                                        Is there some principled way to assign probabilities to conjectures written in PA or ZFC before they are proven or disproven? This workshop led by Andrew Critch will introduce a new algorithm for doing this, which satisfies a criterion called Garrabrant induction that has many nice asymptotic consequences. In particular, the algorithm learns to “trust itself” in that it assigns high probability to its own predictions being accurate (it can refer to itself because ZFC and PA can talk about algorithms). It also assigns high probabilities to provable statements much faster than proofs can be found for them, as long as the statements are easy to write down. More generally, the algorithm was developed as a candidate model for defining “good reasoning” when computational resources are limited. This talk will given an overview of the algorithm, the Garrabrant induction criterion, and its currently known implications.
                                                        Excellent choice for mathematically and computer science inclined participants.

                                                        Why should you care about having an impact? What are examples of good tech companies? How does impact evaluation fit into the startup process?

                                                        All these questions and many more will be answered by Richard Batty and Michael Peyton Jones, founders of the Good Technology Project. In this workshop, Richard and Michael will show participants how to search for an important problem to solve by modelling and measuring their impact. He will discuss the mechanisms, difficulties and counterfactuals involved in the process.

                                                        Do you want to lead a high impact venture? If so, this is the workshop to start with!

                                                        Technology can extend human capabilities - for better and for worse. For example, nuclear physics enabled a new source of electricity but also the means to destroy cities full of people. Future technologies such as artificial intelligence, biotechnology, and nanotechnology could bring enormous benefits or extreme global catastrophe, depending on how they are designed and used. So what does that mean for us? This workshop will cover how to assess the risks and potential benefits of future technologies and how to shift them from risk to benefit.

                                                        9:30 am - 11:00 am
                                                        Panel: Genetic Engineering and Prospects for Human Enhancement

                                                        Panelists include:
                                                        Gregory Stock - Professor @ Icahn School of Medicine; Founder@ Signum Bioscience
                                                        Anders Sandberg - James Martin Research Fellow at Future of Humanity Institute, Oxford University
                                                        Sam Sternberg - Doctoral Researcher @ Doudna Lab, UC Berkeley

                                                        Venue: Friend Center, Auditorium 101

                                                        Each breakout group focused on applications of one keystone technology, students will receive a simulation problem--involving both innovation trajectories and risk prevention involved in real-world tech integration--and will work collaboratively to draft a resolution. Resolutions will need to take into account technical aspects as well as social, economic, political, and industry implications.

                                                        Venue: Friend Center Library, Conference Rooms

                                                        Princeton Envision was founded to inspire our generation to pioneer a brighter future through the responsible and innovative use of rapidly developing disruptive technologies, and this requires a sustained effort. A three-day conference can only scratch the surface of the revolutionary impacts of these technologies on our future.

                                                        Our goal is to build a global network of bright and talented young pioneers. Build a Vision will explain how participants can set up Envision chapters at their universities to gain more in-depth exposure to the technologies and their implications as well as to instigate action.

                                                        Activities of Envision chapters may include but are not limited to: inviting guest speakers; hosting trips to relevant companies, institutions, and conferences; innovation competitions; and discussions.

                                                        Venue: Friend Center, Auditorium 101

                                                        The Closing Ceremony will wrap up Envision Conference and tie together the many issues discussed into a single thread: the future is going to be drastically different from the present as a result of technology, and we can act now to harness its full potential.

                                                        The Closing Ceremony will include:
                                                        Announcement of the winners of Envision Entrepreneurship
                                                        “Pioneering a Brighter Future” - President of Princeton Envision
                                                        Keynote Address: Julia Bossmann, President @ Foresight Institute

                                                        Venue: Friend Center, Auditorium 101

                                                        We will provide you with a venue to network with participants you have not yet had the chance to meet.

                                                        Venue: Campus Club

                                                        Last Year's Sponsors

                                                        The Companies & Organisations that make Envision Conference possible

                                                        ModernMeadow_Logo_FINAL
                                                        kernel-logotype-rgb-darkslate
                                                        prudential_logo.154125108_std
                                                        Print
                                                        Princeton-DoCL
                                                        CST Logo
                                                        Princeton MAE
                                                        Keller Center

                                                        Last Year's Partners and Advisors

                                                        Future of life institute
                                                        PPPL
                                                        spacex_logo
                                                        pv-logo
                                                        MIRI
                                                        foresight-logo-scaled-yt
                                                        io

                                                        Shirley Tilghman

                                                        President Emerita and Professor of Molecular Biology @ Princeton University, Board Member @Google, 2015 President @ American Society for Cell Biology

                                                        Peter Bruce-Clark

                                                        Co-Founder @ Permutation Ventures

                                                        Sam Altman

                                                        President @ Y Combinator, Co-Chairman @ OpenAI

                                                          Jaan Tallinn

                                                          Co-founder @ Skype, Co-founder @ Future of Life Institute, Partner @ Ambient Sound Investments

                                                            Brett Schilke

                                                            Head of Impact @ Singularity University

                                                            Emily Lammers

                                                            Product Manager, Global Macro @ Franklin Templeton Investments

                                                            Last Year's Technology Expo Presenters

                                                            odg_logo

                                                            Osterhout Design Group

                                                            Augmented Reality – SmartGlasses

                                                            NeuroDigitalLogo (1)

                                                            NeuroDigital

                                                            Virtual Reality – GloveOneVR

                                                            Simplex Sciences Logo (1)

                                                            Simplex Sciences

                                                            Biotech – DNA Ladder Fabrication

                                                            MakerarmLogoVector (1)

                                                            MakerArm

                                                            Robotics – MakerArm

                                                            timelooper-logo

                                                            TimeLooper

                                                            Virtual Reality – Time Travel in The City

                                                            IRIS-ETH Logo (1)

                                                            ETH IRIS - Institute of Robotics and Intelligence Systems

                                                            Nanotechnology – Nanoswimmers

                                                            OSU NBL Logo (1)

                                                            Ohio State University Nanoengineering and Biodesign Lab

                                                            Nanotechnology/Biotechnology – DNA Origami Machines and Nanostructures

                                                            Princeton Rocketry Club Logo (1)

                                                            Princeton Rocketry Club

                                                            Space Exploration – Blasting Off Again: An Intro to High-Power Rocketry

                                                            Princeton 3D Printing Club Logo (2)

                                                            Princeton 3D Printing Club

                                                            3D Printing – Creative Designs

                                                            VR Artist (Visuals) - Can Buyukberber

                                                            Morphogenesis

                                                            VR Artist (Sound) - Yagmur Uyanik

                                                            Morphogenesis

                                                            Brown Space Engineering

                                                            Nanosatellite EQUiSat

                                                            Hosted by

                                                            Envision
                                                            entrepreneurship-club

                                                            Location

                                                            • Princeton University
                                                            • info@envision-conference.com

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