Bernstein Seminar
You have a new invitation for the Bernstein Seminar on 6 March 2018!

March 6, 2018

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Unité de Neuroscience, Information et Complexité (UNIC-CNRS)


Tuesday, 6 March 2018


17:15 h


vCal iCal


Lecture Hall (ground floor)
Bernstein Center Freiburg
Hansastraße 9a
79104 Freiburg


Hosted by Ad Aertsen

Industrialisation of Neuroscience and Artificial Intelligence: From the Digital Simulation of the Brain to the Myth of Transhumanism

New technologies in neuroscience generate reams of data at an exponentially increasing rate, spurring the design of very-large-scale data-mining initiatives. Several supranational ventures are contemplating the possibility of achieving, within the next decade(s), full digital simulation of the human brain.
This "opinion" review questions the scientific and strategic underpinnings of the runaway enthusiasm for Big Data and industrial-scale projects at the interface between “wet” (biology) and “hard” (physics, microelectronics and computer science).
I will focus on four major issues:
(i) Are Big data produced by the industrialization of neuroscience and new algorithms in artificial intelligence, such as "deep learning", the soundest way to achieve substantial progress in understanding the brain?
(ii) Do we have a safe “roadmap” to build a Mega-Science of the Mind based on a scientific consensus?
(iii) Irrespectively of technological feasibility, what could be the main conceptual bottle-necks?
(iv) Do these large-scale approaches announce a new trend in scientific conduct, fueled by economics of promises and by the overselling of futurist mythology (theory of singularity and transhumanism).


Frégnac, Y. (2017). Big Data and Industrialization of Neuroscience: Is there a safe roadmap for understanding the Brain? Science 358, 470-477.(Link)


The talk is open to the public. Guests are cordially invited!



13-03-2018           Prof. Siegrid Löwel, Göttingen University

27-03-2018           Prof. Tomislav Milekovic, University of Geneve


Hansastraße 9a
79104 Freiburg im Breisgau