Richard Boyd

CEO and Founder of Tanjo Inc. and Founder Ultisim Inc.

Over the last twenty-five years, Richard has led or helped create some of the most innovative game technology companies in the industry. He has served as a game technology consultant for a wide variety of industries including energy, healthcare, education and motion pictures. He is co-founder and CEO of a machine learning company called Tanjo Inc, and a simulation learning company called Ultisim. At Aerospace giant Lockheed Martin he created and led a group of innovative engineers and designers across all mission areas called Virtual World Labs. Richard joined Lockheed Martin in 2007 with the acquisition of 3Dsolve, a North Carolina based computer game technology firm where he was founder and CEO. While there, Boyd helped architect the Department of Defense Virtual World Framework.

He also spearheaded the effort to use 3D visualization technologies to create virtual environments for movies including Warner Brothers’ feature Fearless, a John Hay film titled The Steal, and Brian dePalma’s blockbuster Mission: Impossible.

Boyd is also a children’s book author and is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Talk Description:

The Black Mirror implications of using Data Exhaust and Machine Learning to Model People
In this talk, I will discuss how the data exhaust hapless humans leave behind as they traipse and trollop around the Internet can be harnessed with machine learning to model them in great detail, for both positive and negative purposes. There is evidence that these synthetic models can be better predictors of future behavior than focus groups and surveys. Netflix and Amazon and Google all know that if you want to understand people, you don’t ask them questions, you monitor what they do with their time, money and attention.

The implications of this revelation range from explaining why no exit polls and surveys predicted Donald Trump or Brexit; to why we now demand kale in restaurants when no one was eating it six years ago, and how we are going to manage personal, commercial and political relationships in the future. Can we resurrect the dead? Should we? What conversations would we have with these synthetic people? What are the implications for characters in gaming?

Pre-reading Doc Searls’ book “The Intention Economy” will be very helpful before this talk. It also wouldn’t hurt to watch a few Black Mirror episodes or read some Ray Kurzweil rants.