Sophie will explore the idea that the way that computers see the world is becoming our dominant reality. The idea that a physical object, and its data ‘exhaust’, are in constant dialogue with each other. As machine autonomy creeps into our everyday lives, we are creating a physical internet, where people, objects, vehicles move as seamlessly in the real world, as data moves around the internet. Digital bots or ‘agents’ might represent us in interactions with our banks, friends, colleagues. Autonomous companies might soon be big players in the economy. Sophie will explore a world where human and machine ‘vision’ will collaborate, compete, and even merge together.
Sophie is a futurist whose research entails meeting weirdos and troublemakers in off-the-beaten-track labs, makerspaces, garages around the globe – Shenzhen, Seoul, Detroit, Mumbai. As part of her research, she consults for exec teams and boards of large companies on understanding the explosive new technologies defining the new economy. Sophie is also CEO of a data and AI company, 1715 Labs, that she’s currently spinning out of the Astrophysics department at Oxford University with her academic co-founder. This follows a career building businesses for WIRED magazine, for Singularity University at the NASA Research Park in Silicon Valley, and prior to California, the interdisciplinary Oxford Martin School at Oxford University, where Sophie raised more than $120m of research investment.