Northern California Science Writers Association

How do we build trustworthy AI—and what does that mean?

  • Thursday, December 08, 2022
  • 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Drake's Dealership, Oakland


Artificial intelligence (AI) is making a tremendous impact across diverse fields. In basic science, DeepMind’s AlphaFold is enabling unprecedented progress in predicting the 3D structures of proteins; in medicine, AI is increasingly used for cancer detection and other diagnostic applications; in art and writing, OpenAI’s DALL-E 2 and GPT-3 are creating images and text so compellingly “human” that they raise questions about the nature of creativity.

However, current AI models also incorporate various biases that could cause significant harm if these tools are widely deployed. For this year’s NCSWA holiday event, James Zou will present an informal, interactive demonstration of several biases in state-of-the-art AI used for medical diagnosis and for generating text and images. He will also discuss current bias mitigation efforts and broader societal implications of using AI.  

As assistant professor of biomedical data science, computer science, and electrical engineering at Stanford University, Zou develops data science and machine-learning methods for biology and medicine. He works on both improving the foundations of AI–-by making models more trustworthy and reliable–-as well as deep scientific and clinical applications. Also a Chan Zuckerberg Biohub Investigator, Zou has received a Sloan Fellowship, an NSF CAREER Award, a Top 10 Clinical Achievement Award from Stanford, and faculty awards from Google, Amazon, Tencent and Adobe.

WHEN: Thursday, December 8, 2022

6 - 7:15 p.m. – mixer & dinner

7:30 p.m. – talk and demo by James Zou

WHEREDrake’s Dealership, 2325 Broadway, Oakland, located about 4 blocks from 19t St. BART station.

This classic brick building on Oakland’s historic Broadway Auto Row was once the parts and service department of an old Dodge dealership. Attendees will enjoy a variety of their wood-fired pizzas and can sample their fresh beer brewed right here in the East Bay (no-host bar). Salad and dessert are included.

COST: $20 members (includes one guest), $38 non-members, $12 students

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