Currently working on a PHD in Media Arts and Technology at UC Santa Barbara, polymath Xárene Eskandar has shown to be an expert in artificial intelligence at the APEX event on Feb. 27, 2020.
Being a “polymath” means that Eskandar is an individual whose knowledge spans a significant number of subjects. This is certainly true, as she holds the title of concept designer, teacher, architect, researcher, photographer, visual reality designer and writer. She continues each day to deepen her learning in a variety of subjects.
Eskandar educated the audience on the topic of artificial intelligence (AI), which has been increasingly more popular as technology advances in today’s world. AI is where the mind of a human can be recreated in machines to imitate a human being and the actions they would typically perform.
She spoke about how her research has pointed her in the direction of evolution of the symbiotic relationship of technology and the human.
“The body is the first architecture that we all occupy,” said Eskandar, “the body has limitations and it shouldn’t with the technology we have and the epoc that we are in. We should really be moving along faster.”
In 2015, Eskandar and some friends began developing a virtual reality game in Iceland. The game was designed to find temporal laterance and look at the different ways to time travel.
Using the theme behind her virtual reality game idea, she created an AI company in 2016 called Clocksmith AI that allows people to be able to see how landscapes will be affected with time.
During the presentation, Eskandar showed the audience her piece where she used over 24 different slices of a photo taken from sunrise to sunset and created a photo with the slices side by side to show the scale of time.
“I wanted to know what all of time looked like so [with] this image, you have all of time in one day. You have sunrise on the left and sunset on the right and all the times in between…[so] you don’t miss any time…you experience all of time,” explained Eskandar.
Addison Rylant said, “I liked how she referred to AI as augmented intelligence and it changes [the] concept of what it means.”
The advice that she left for undergraduates is to not place yourself in a category, but to get outside your area of expertise because everything in the world is interconnected in some way.
Eskandar advised the audience to not stay in a compartment, but to dive outside of comfort zones and “see where the world can take you.”
Story by: Lacy Truman
Photos by: Lacy Truman