Marvin Lee Minsky (1927)

Minsky is a pioneer on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and most notably known (together with Seymour Papert) for his controversal book ‘Percpetrons’ and his work on neural networks.

Minsky’s theory says intelligence is not born of any single mechanism, but from the interaction of many independent agents. He also pioneered advances in mathematics, computational linguistics, optics, robotics and telepresence.

He built SNARC, the first neural network simulator, some of the first visual scanners, and the first LOGO “turtle.” From his headquarters at MIT’s Media Lab and the AI Lab (which he helped found), he continues to work on, as he says, “imparting to machines the human capacity for commonsense reasoning.”

Fun facts:

  • Minsky has acted as a consultant for the design of HAL 9000 in the movie “2001: A Space Odyssey”

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