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Gunnar Tufte: Maverick Machines: from Self-organising Matter to Thinking machines

June 20, 2018 @ 2:15 pm - 3:30 pm


At this point in time AI is considered a success, once again seen as a technology with enormous growth potential. Is there limit to growth? In today’s increasingly data-rich society a staggering 10 exabytes are created every day and emerging technologies like the Internet of things (IoT) will substantially increase the data growth rate, and further increase the demand for efficient analysis. Is our current take on AI and computation sustainable? I claim NO. Current data processing approaches and hardware are incapable of unlocking the tremendous quantities of useful information held within this data. The main obstacle is the enormous amounts of required computing power and energy. As such, we need radical breakthroughs toward new approaches that are efficient, scalable, and may be adapted to the needs of diverse and complex data analysis tasks. Bio-inspiration and self-organisation can provide such systems. Systems with a high degree of synergy between the hardware approach and the computational paradigm.


Gunnar Tufte is a Professor at the Department of Computer Science at NTNU. His main expertise is within unconventional computation, bio-inspired design, artificial life and artificial intelligence. The unifying term of Tufte’s research efforts has been unconventional computer architectures. In this context, unconventional is defined to be massively parallel computations that are not restricted to Von Neumann’s stored program concept. Introducing unconventional machines enforce an alternative view on computation that can be summarised; “unconventional computation on unconventional machines”. Targets questions related to how adaptive self-assembly, self-reconfigurable and self-organising machines could be achieved as to be able to handle scalability and complexity.

Read about his research (Norwegian): Teknologi som ingen helt kan forstå (www.forskning.no/2017/05/teknologi-som-ingen-helt-kan-forsta)

Key projects and activity

NAnoSCale Enginering for Novel Computation using Evolution (NASCENCE) (www.nascence.eu)

Self-Organizing Computational substRATES (SOCRATES) (www.ntnu.edu/socrates)

NTNU Morphogenetic Engineering (www.ntnu.edu/web/ntnu-biotechnology/ntnu-morphogenetic-engineering)


June 20, 2018
2:15 pm - 3:30 pm
Event Category:


TekLab, Media City Bergen
Lars Hilles gate 30
Bergen, 5008 Norway
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