Ben Goertzel after giving a talk at the 2009 Humanity+ Summit in Irvine, California
December 8, 1966|
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Ben Goertzel (born December 8, 1966) is the founder and CEO of SingularityNET, a blockchain-based AI marketplace. Goertzel is also the chief scientist of financial prediction firm Aidyia Holdings and robotics firm Hanson Robotics; chairman of AI software company Novamente LLC, a privately held software company; chairman of the Artificial General Intelligence Society and the OpenCog Foundation; vice chairman of futurist nonprofit Humanity+; scientific advisor of biopharma firm Genescient Corp.; advisor to Singularity University; research professor in the Fujian Key Lab for Brain-Like Intelligent Systems at Xiamen University of Technology, China; chair of the Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) conference series, and an American author and researcher in the field of artificial intelligence. He was the Director of Research of the Machine Intelligence Research Institute (formerly the Singularity Institute).
Goertzel is the son of Ted Goertzel, a former professor of sociology at Rutgers University. He left high school after the tenth grade to attend Bard College at Simon's Rock, where he graduated with a bachelor's degree in Quantitative Studies. Goertzel went on to obtain a Ph.D. in mathematics from Temple University in 1989. He is the Chief Scientist of Hanson Robotics, the creator of the robot Sophia.
In May 2007, Goertzel spoke at a Google Tech talk about his approach to creating Artificial General Intelligence. He defines intelligence as the ability to detect patterns in the world and in the agent itself, measurable in terms of emergent behavior of "achieving complex goals in complex environments." A "baby-like" artificial intelligence is initialized, then trained as an agent in a simulated or virtual world such as Second Life to produce a more powerful intelligence. Knowledge is represented in a network whose nodes and links carry probabilistic truth values as well as "attention values," with the attention values resembling the weights in a neural network. Several algorithms operate on this network, the central one being a combination of a probabilistic inference engine and a custom version of evolutionary programming. Goertzel claimed that this combination is able to avoid the combinatorial explosions that both these algorithms suffer from when exposed to large problems.
2009: Goertzel and Hugo de Garis starred in a 45-minute documentary called Singularity or Bust.
2014: Goertzel appeared on the American science documentary television series, Through the Wormhole (episode 1, season 5).
2016: Goertzel starred in the British-Israeli documentary film, Machine of Human Dreams