Artificial Intelligence - Are machines smarter than us?

Exhibit graphicOn exhibit now at the Ken Seiling Waterloo Region Museum

There is no modern technology talked about as much as artificial intelligence. AI is in the headlines, it’s in our computing devices, and it is a pervasive topic when pondering our future. AI is at once exciting, wondrous, mysterious, misunderstood, praised, and feared.

Artificial Intelligence: Your Mind & The Machine is a traveling exhibit that explores how artificial intelligence is relevant to our lives right now. Using hands-on interactives, touchscreens, and examples from history and popular culture, the exhibit gives visitors of all ages an up-close look at exactly what thinking machines are . . . and what they might become.

From illusions that fool computers, to machines that can identify their surroundings and translate languages, this exhibit features dozens of ways that our brains and computers interact with the world. It also explains how our brains and AI will work together in the future.

People are reading about AI in the news and hearing about its use in an ever-growing number of consumer products, but they are not discovering what artificial intelligence really is, how it works, what it can do, and what it might do.

Children are not taught about AI in schools, and adults in the workplace are not typically instructed in ways that they can use AI. Their primary exposure to what makes artificial intelligence work is through science fiction in all its media forms (movies, TV, books, etc.). 

The AI Exhibit presents a unique opportunity to educate people of all ages about artificial intelligence. In doing so, it will inspire people to learn more about AI, and perhaps investigate how AI will be part of their future—as end users and even as developers. 

Artificial Intelligence: Your Mind & The Machine is an exhibit created by The Relayer Group. The company creates opportunities that bring innovation and technology to consumers of all ages through enriching and educational experiences.

Speaker Series

The Balsillie School of International Affairs and Ken Seiling Waterloo Region Museum are pleased to present an Artificial Intelligence Lecture Series. Covering the benefits, drawbacks, dangers, and governance challenges, this lecture series will provide thought-provoking insights into the past, present, and future of AI.


Aaron Shull

Navigating AI Security Risks: Insights and Strategies for the Future

Date - Tuesday, June 4
Time - 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., doors at 6:00 p.m.
Speaker - Aaron Shull

Join Aaron Shull from the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) as he explores the multifaceted security challenges presented by generative AI. This session will guide you through the web of potential threats, from the amplification of conventional cyber risks by AI technologies to the complexities of AI's utility in both defence and offence. We will examine scenarios where AI not only strengthens existing cybersecurity measures but also serves as a powerful tool in the arsenal of cyber adversaries, including the creation of sophisticated malware and deepfake techniques.

Aaron Shull is the managing director and general counsel at CIGI. He is a senior legal executive and is recognized as a leading expert on complex issues at the intersection of public policy, emerging technology, cybersecurity, privacy and data protection.


Conceptualizing Governance of Artificial Intelligence: Opportunities and Challenges

Date - Tuesday, July 9
Time - 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., doors at 6:00 p.m.
Speaker - Maral Niazi

With the rise of the artificial intelligence (AI) frontier, the world is on the cusp of a technological renaissance. This extraordinary and transformative opportunity will reshape every facet of life as we know it. As a result, humanity is confronted with the monumental responsibility of governing this transformative force—a challenge that requires unprecedented collaboration, innovation, and ethical foresight. This presentation will explore the complex landscape of AI governance in mitigating the societal challenges associated with AI while harnessing its potential. The talk will highlight national and international initiatives related to AI governance, showcasing how effective governance of AI—protecting the public interest and human rights—can promote sustainable development, enhance democratic processes, and foster an equitable technological future.

Maral Niazi is a Digital Policy Hub doctoral fellow and a Ph.D. candidate at the Balsillie School of International Affairs. She takes a multilateral and multistakeholder approach to studying the global governance of Artificial Intelligence, focusing on the many impacts of AI on society and humanity.

Joel Blit

From past tech to present AI: understanding the coming AI transformation and its likely impact on jobs, skills, and inequality

Date - Tuesday, August 13, 2024
Time - 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., doors at 6:00 p.m.
Speaker - Dr. Joel Blit

The coming AI revolution will shake the foundations of Canada’s economy, at once offering an opportunity to alter our lagging economic trajectory and resulting in potentially adverse societal impacts. University of Waterloo professor Joel Blit, a recognized thought leader in AI, will help us understand how the AI transformation is going to unfold, how we might seize its opportunities, and what will be its likely impacts on jobs, skills, and inequality.

Dr. Joel Blit is a Professor of Economics at the University of Waterloo, where he Chairs the Council on Innovation Policy, and a Senior Fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation. He is an authority on innovation policy and strategy, and his work has featured in numerous media outlets including The Economist, The Globe and Mail, and the CBC.

Joel leverages his expertise to advise policymakers and industry leaders on the transformative potential of artificial intelligence. As a sought-after speaker, facilitator, and consultant, he regularly delivers compelling talks, productive workshops, and invaluable consulting services to global organizations. He has advised CEOs, Cabinet Ministers, and the G7 representatives, among others, and his innovative framework for thinking about technological disruption has been adopted by a multi-billion dollar financial firm as the foundation of its AI strategy.

Joel is most passionate about helping all Canadians understand the coming transformation and the benefits that it can bring for our country.