Microsoft has announced that Professor Stephen Hawking will be a keynote speaker at its flagship UK event next month.
The world-renowned physicist will deliver the closing speech on the first day of Future Decoded, the company’s two-day conference in London that looks at how the digital revolution is affecting the world.
Professor Hawking, the former Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge and author of the international bestseller A Brief History of Time, will share his thoughts on artificial intelligence and how it may impact humans.
Microsoft has also announced that Future Decoded, held at ExCeL London on November 1 and 2, will host the UK’s first developer session of HoloLens.
The mixed-reality headset has been launched in six new markets, including the UK, following its release in the US and Canada in March.
Rather than place users in a fully computer-generated world, as virtual reality does, HoloLens allows you to put 3D digital models in the room with you. As the Windows-10-based product does not have wires or external cameras, or requires a phone or PC connection, users can walk around the objects they create and interact with them using gestures, gaze and voice.
Dave Coplin talks to Satya Nadella at Future Decoded in 2015
Microsoft first announced HoloLens, which is aimed at developers and enterprise customers, at its Windows 10: The Next Chapter event in January 2015, and has since seen many global companies use the technology in their businesses.
Attendees to the Business and Technical days of Future Decoded will also hear speeches from Martine Wright, a 7/7 survivor and Paralympic athlete; Chris Messina, Developer Experience Lead at Uber; Chris Bishop, Scientist and Lab Director at Microsoft Research; Mike Bugeme, Chief Analytics Officer at JustGiving; Toni Townes-Whitley, Corporate Vice-President for the Worldwide Public Sector at Microsoft; and Avi Reichental, Chief Executive of XponentialWorks, among others.
Future Decoded will also feature a life-size replica of the 1,000mph Bloodhound Car, which will attempt to break the land speed record in South Africa next year, as well as model rocket car races.
Students built and developed their rocket cars using a BBC micro:bit, a small, programmable computer that has been developed by the BBC and 31 partners, including Microsoft and the Army. The device, which features a 5×5 LED display, accelerometer, compass, buttons, I/O pins, Micro USB plug, Bluetooth Low Energy antenna and external battery pack, has been given free of charge to every Year 7 (11-12 years old) child in the UK in a bid to get more youngsters interested in coding.