A dazzling vision of the future. Many think the first truly smart robots will be brain emulations or ‘ems’: scan a human brain, then run a model with the same connections on a fast computer and you have a robot brain but recognisably human. Applying decades of expertise in physics, computer science and economics, Hanson uses standard theories to paint a detailed picture of a world dominated by ems. Chaired by Daniel Davis.
When Tony Blair became prime minister in May 1997, he was, at 43, the youngest person to hold that office since 1812. With a landslide majority, his approval rating was 93% and he went on to become Labour’s longest-serving premier. What went wrong? #Corruptiooptimipessima. The Chilcot report is expected in June.
Presenter Paddy O’Connell talks about life behind the scenes at the BBC and programme-making. Plus he’ll give the audience a chance to contribute and influence the running orders of future editions of Broadcasting House.
Not for broadcast.
The Battle of the Atlantic was crucial to victory in the Second World War. If the German U-boats had prevailed, the maritime artery across the Atlantic would have been severed. Mass hunger would have consumed Britain, and the Allied armies would have been prevented from joining in the invasion of Europe. There would have been no D-Day. Using fascinating contemporary diaries and letters, from the leaders and the sailors on all sides, Dimbleby maps the human stories, the intelligence breakthroughs and the strategic daring of this turning point in European history.
The new star of Israeli literatura speaks with the journalist and editor in chief of the international section of El País, Guillermo Altares, about her book The People of Forever Are Not Afraid: A Novel (La gente como nosotros no tiene miedo, Alfaguara) in which she captures the frustration, cruelty, rage and pain depicted in the military service of young soldiers. Translated into 23 languages, awarded with the «5 Under 35» and finalist of the 2013 Sami Rohr and the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2013.
Simultaneous translation from English into Spanish.
Co-organised with the Embassy of Israel in Spain.
The changing ‘treescape’ of the UK holds clues to social, political and natural events throughout history. From agriculture to boat building, Dutch elm disease and the great storm of 1987, the state of trees and woods in our landscape tell a story of our past and hold lessons for our future. Author Fiona Stafford and woodland ecologist George Peterken, both featured in Arboreal, a Common Ground collection of woodland writing, talk to Christiana Payne, Professor of History of Art at Oxford Brookes University.
This is science with all the squishy bits left in. Join the author of Horrible Science for funny facts, scary stories and explosive experiments on stage. Horrible Science has amazed children for more than 20 yucky years with blood-curdling biology, frightful physics and crazy chemistry.
Rather than continually making more clothes using more materials, there should be a greater emphasis on how clothes can be repaired, adapted and upcycled. The Professor of Sustainability, Design and Fashion at University of the Arts London presents an inspiring manifesto for improving durability and resourcefulness in the fashion industry.
A conversation with two giants of European Literature, both of whom have won both the IMPAC Award and the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize. Petterson follows Out Stealing Horses with his new novel I Refuse. Tommy’s mother has gone. She walked out into the snow one night, leaving him and his sisters with their violent father. Without his best friend Jim, Tommy would be in trouble. But Jim has challenges of his own which will disrupt their precious friendship. Bakker follows The Detour with June. On a hot summer’s day in June 1969 everyone is gathered to welcome Queen Juliana. The young boys and girls wave their flags enthusiastically. But just as the monarch is getting into her car to leave, little Hanne Kaan and her mother arrive late – the Queen strokes the little girl’s cheek and regally offers Anna Kaan her hand. It would have been an unforgettable day of celebration if only the baker hadn’t been running late with his deliveries and knocked down Hanne, playing on the roadside, with his brand-new VW van…
Armitage’s acclaimed version of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight confirmed his reputation as a leading poetry translator. This new work is an entrancing allegorical tale of grief and lost love. The narrator is led on a Dantean journey through sorrow to redemption by his vanished beloved, Pearl. Retaining all the alliterative music of the original, a Medieval English poem thought to be by the same anonymous author responsible for Gawain, Pearl is here brought to vivid and intricate life.
Few would dispute that we live in an unequal and unjust world, but what causes this inequality to persist? Dorling, author of Inequality and the 1%, examines who is most harmed by these injustices and why, and what happens to those who most benefit. O’Hara, author of Austerity Bites, takes us on a journey to the sharp end of the cuts in the UK. Hard-hitting and uncompromising in their call to action, this event is essential for everyone concerned with social justice.
The geneticist, author of Creation: The Origin of Life/The Future of Life explains how the evolution of music is notably similar to biological evolution: sampling closely mimics synthetic biology, as wholesale pieces of other organisms are swapped to add functions and behaviours for our purposes. And now, as with the copyright issues that strangled creativity in hip-hop, patents in genetics act as crippling hindrances to scientific progress.
A gloriously indulgent celebration of our Great British love affair with sweet-making and good old-fashioned confectionery. From peardrops to humbugs, honeycomb confections to liquorice, coconut ice to sugar mice, Nozedar gives us the rich history of these classic sweets along with over fifty easy-to-follow recipes for how to make them at home.
There will be a vodka sherbet tasting at this event.
Trees are one of humanity’s most constant and most varied companions. From India’s sacred banyan tree to the fragrant cedar of Lebanon, they offer us sanctuary and inspiration – not to mention the raw materials for everything from aspirin to maple syrup. Jonathan Drori, a trustee of The Woodland Trust and The Eden Project, uses plant science to illuminate how trees play a role in every part of human life, from the romantic to the regrettable.