When the European Space Agency (ESA) contacted me in early 2018 to collaborate with my research on artificial intelligence and the concept of scientific exploration in the 21st century I felt like a pandora box had opened. In my many years exploring how the human brain works in order to better train neural networked machines, that is, to teach a machine via deep learning how to develop understanding of a given task, never did I imagine that this odd work of mine was going to reach the ears of a space agency.
ESA’s bi-annual summit “Space for Inspiration” aims to convey to both governments and industry that space exploration is not only the natural evolution of humankind’s pioneer spirit but also an industry that offers commercial opportunities for many sectors. At the summit in late October, I presented my research on human neoteny and defended that the spirit of exploration is what has ignited and powered all scientific and entrepreneurial endeavours across our various human civilisations. I made the point that, in this new 2020 decade that was transforming the concept of progress thanks to the advancement of technology, engineering and science, we were at the gates of exponentially achieving a new renaissance and the possibility of expanding our footprint into the galaxy.
"The transformational breakthroughs that we are achieving in space are going to revolutionise and commercialise the space sector"
Jim Bridenstine NASA Director General
Magali Vaissière, ESA Director of Telecommunications and Integrated Applications
Simonetta Cheli, Head of Strategy, Programmes and Coordination Office, ESA Directorate of Earth Observation
Javier Benedicto, Galileo Programme Manager of ESA
Carmen Ríos Aguilera, Head of Operational Market Development and Safety Critical applications GSA
Alain Ratier, EUMETSAT General Director
Thomas Fouquet, CNES Advisor to the Director of Innovation, Applications & Science
Fernando Doblas, ESA Ambassador to the CVA Presidency