2011 Loebner Prize

The College is excited to host the 2011 Loebner Prize on 19 October. The top four AI programs will compete to win a share of a prize fund worth $5750, with additional prizes available this year for the Junior Loebner Prize.

Hear from the event organiser discussing Will we ever create thinking machines?

2011 Loebner Prize

The Loebner Prize, named after its founder and philanthropist Hugh Loebner, is an annual world-wide contest to test the state-of-the-art in artificial intelligence (AI).

The contest is based on the Turing Test conceived by the British polymath Alan Turing in 1950 which tests whether machines can be considered as artificially intelligent.  In this test a panel of human judges must ask questions of a human and a computer program and determine which is which.  The task for the computer program is to answer questions in as a human would and thus fool the judges into mistakenly judging them as human rather than machine.  Turing stated that machines that could achieve this task could be said to be 'thinking'.

The Loebner Prize is an annual contest based on the Turing Test and has run continuously since 1991. In the 2011 contest $5750 prize money and the Bronze medal will be awarded as follows:

1st place $4000 and the Annual Bronze Medal to the submitters of the most human-like machine as determined by the panel of judges.
2nd place $1000
3rd place $500
4th place $250

At risk will be the $25,000 Silver Medal Prize.

A Gold Medal (pictured) and $100,000 prize is awarded to a machine that generates responses that are indistinguishable from a human.  More information on the Loebner Prize can be found here.

Junior Loebner Prize

For the first time in its history the Loebner Prize will also include a separate prize known as the Junior Loebner Prize in which the judging panel will consist of students between 12 and 14 years old. This prize arose after a paper and discussion at AISB 2010 where contest organiser, Dr Keedwell proposed a Turing Test based on child development.  It should be fascinating to see if the students discriminate between the machine and human differently to the adult judges.  An additional small prize fund is available for the machines in this contest.  To choose the judges, the College is running a competition involving local schools as part of our outreach programme.  If your School is interested in taking part and is reasonably local to Exeter, please get in touch with Dr Zena Wood.

Visual Turing test

Dr Antony Galton and Michael Barclay from the University of Exeter have devised a test that asks machines to mimic our visual recognition abilities. New Scientist magazine have reported (Take the visual Turing Test) on the test and have a copy of the test online for you to try out. Take the test to see what you deem as the most "human" answer.

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