Saturday, September 23, 2006

Loebner 2006 - Contest Day

Date: Sunday 17 September 2006

Wow! After more than 18 months of planning to bring the contest back to London, the day had arrived. Tim had secured the venue for the 2006 Loebner Prize for Artificial Intelligence: VR theatre at UCL

Got to Hugh and Tim's hotel around 8.15am in Bedford Way and walked to Torrington Place. Felt very tired, had been hard work the day before. Greg had done a fantastic job, would it all go wrong on the day?

View within the theatre: Professor Warwick (Loebner 2006 Judge) and Mrs Warwick seated, on stage Loebner Judges (Pofessor of AI, John Barnden; journalist, Duncan Graham-Rowe) chat concomittantly to two entities and attempt to determine which is machine and which is human -

Behind the scenes: a hidden-human chats unseen and unheard to a Judge in the VR theatre looked on by my friend Angelique, assistant headmistress at a school for children with special needs -

The scores are being computed and the winner is announced: Rollo Carpenter wins Loebner 2006:

With Professor Kevin Warwick, my volunteers on the day without whom my day would have been that less enjoyable and that much more difficult, from left Adrian Wildeis, Prof Warwick, Dritan Nikolla and Frederik Fix:

So ended an exciting and fun Loebner 2006. Thank you to HL for sponsoring the event, thanks to Tim for finding the venue, thanks to Greg for setting up the equipment, thanks to my volunteers, including Marc Allen (how did you escape my photos!) and last but not least thanks to this year's contestants and well done Rollo, again.

Finally, some media item links:

BBC World Services ‘Digital Planet’ and Jon Stewart’s take on Loebner 2006 can be found here:

Loebner 2006 Judge, Duncan Graham-Rowe, Technology Review piece on the contest can be found here:

Channel 4 News, Jon Snow’s interview with Loebner 2006 winner Rollo Carpenter:
http://www.channel4 .com/news/

Guardian – Technology, piece on Loebner 2006:,,1876702,00.html

ABC news:

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