Top honour for AI researcher

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Professor Hans Guesgen

Professor Hans Guesgen has been made a senior member of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence.

He is one of only nine members worldwide to be given the honour. Senior Member status was established to recognise members of the association who have achieved significant accomplishments within the field of artificial intelligence.

The presentation was made at the 25th Conference on Artificial Intelligence in San Francisco, California.

Professor Guesgen holds a chair in Computer Science in the School of Engineering and Advanced Technology.

To be eligible for nomination for senior member, a candidate must have been active in the professional arena for at least 10 years and a consecutive member of the association for at least five years.

Professor Guesgen’s research focuses on smart homes. He is part of the Massey University Smart Environments research group, which hopes to equip houses with sensors and software that is able to read and react to what happens there.

“We want to be able to detect what is going on within the house and react intelligently,” Professor Guesgen says. “The main reasons for this are to ensure the inhabitants are safe – for example a smart house could sense if the inhabitant was behaving in a way that could lead to a dangerous situation, like the gas being left on unintentionally or medication not being taken.”

With the general population aging rapidly this kind of technology would help alleviate the pressures put on humans to provide support.

“It is a vibrant research area worldwide – people are getting older and relying on the support of others is not feasible, so living for longer independently requires some cognitive crutches, and artificial intelligence can provide that,” Professor Guesgen says.

Founded in 1979, the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence is a nonprofit scientific membership society devoted to advancing the scientific understanding of the computational mechanisms underlying thought and intelligent behavior and their embodiment in machines.

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