What we're about

Synthetic Intelligence (SI) is changing the game of business and applied machine learning, deep learning, and reinforcement learning are disrupting industries as well as reshaping markets. If "data is the new oil" then Synthetic Intelligence spans the value chain from the oil well to the gas tank! Commercial and public sector organizations are facing unprecedented upheaval and uncertainty as a result of the innovatory potential of these technologies. As a result, many organizations are redesigning their business models and go-to-market strategies to take advantage of optimization algorithms and data lakes. In this setting, the role of the Data Science professional has risen in prominence and significance across the board. Many organizations are seeking data scientists, data engineers, and data integrators to activate their digital transformation strategies.

This is a meetup for Synthetic Intelligence specialists and enthusiasts to come together and learn from each other in an open, inclusive, and safe space. Data science roles have grown rapidly in the industry and a variety of practices have emerged around the application of Synthetic Intelligence to solve organizational problems. This meetup is a forum for industry professionals, that work with Synthetic Intelligence, to share ideas with each other. The focus of knowledge sharing will not be limited to best practices alone but will also cover shortcuts, workarounds, hacks, as well as tips and tricks. Each month, SI specialists will share their insights via presentations and panel discussions. There will also be ample opportunities for professional networking and knowledge sharing among attendees and meetup group members. Time will be allocated for an open mic segment during each session when interested attendees will be able to deliver one-minute lightning pitches to the audience about relevant topics.

We have chosen the term "Synthetic Intelligence" as opposed to "Artificial Intelligence" in our title because SI more accurately encapsulates the idea that is signified by the term "Artificial General Intelligence" (AGI). The philosopher John Haugeland introduced the term "Synthetic Intelligence" (SI) and differentiated it from "Artificial Intelligence" (AI) with reference to an analogy between artificial diamonds and synthetic diamonds. Cubic zirconia (the cubic crystalline form of zirconium dioxide (ZrO2)) looks like a diamond from a distance and can be regarded as an artificial diamond. However, Cubic zirconia is not truly a diamond because its chemical composition and molecular structure are different from those of a diamond (i.e., a metastable allotrope of carbon). In contrast, a synthetic diamond (or cultured diamond) is a diamond that is produced via an industrial process. It is every bit as "real" as a diamond that is produced by geological processes because it has an identical chemical composition and molecular structure as a mined diamond.

Philosophically, SI is a more accurate description of what the term AI (which includes Machine Learning (ML), Deep Learning (DL), Reinforcement Learning (RL), etc.) stands for. Artificial implies something that is not "real" but ML, DL, and RL are real since they exist in the real world, impact reality in many ways, and do many kinds of real work. Synthetic implies something that is created by intelligent agency rather than by undirected natural process and thus SI is a more appropriate category for ML, DL, and RL. You are cordially invited to join this platform for knowledge sharing and professional networking within a community of practice focused on applied Synthetic Intelligence.

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