Royal Institution Christmas Lectures



We’re delighted to have partnered with the University of Aberdeen and to have brought the livestream for last year’s CHRISTMAS LECTURES from the Royal Institution.

Running for almost 200 years, the CHRISTMAS LECTURES were started by Michael Faraday to inspire and engage young people with science. At 2023 Christmas Lectures Professor Mike Wooldridge explored the truth behind Artificial Intelligence (AI), the most rapidly evolving field of science. This event was aimed at young people aged 11 upwards, but people of all ages could attend the event as well and watch the magic of the Lectures unfold in real time as they’re filmed in front of an audience in the Ri’s Theatre in London. They also had the chance to get involved with hands-on activities, and be the first to learn the truth about AI.


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Throughout the three Lectures, Mike explored the big questions facing AI research and unravel the myths about how this ground-breaking technology really works. How can a machine be taught to play a game or translate from one language to another? He showed how computer programmes inspired by the human brain can be taught and even teach themselves.

And he told the surprising story of how tools like the latest chatbots work and illustrated the mind-boggling scale of modern AI systems – that can be used in everything from gaming to movie-making to designing drugs. Across the series Michael was joined by some major figures from the AI world, including scientists from the world’s leading AI companies. He also introduced a range of robot friends, who demonstrated what robots today can do – and what they can’t. He even surprised the audience with some Deep Fake guests who were not quite what they seemed.


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Watch the lectures on iPlayer here (if you're in the UK) and on YouTube here (if you're outside the UK).   




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