The very first moment I sat and watched Karen Palmer give a talk, I recall how electric it felt. I remember it vividly, because my face felt like it was on fire. I could not believe what just happened to me! EUREKA!
A select group of people from around the world were invited for a series of talks Alternate Realities at the Sheffield Doc Fest. The program was designed to be a space for the experimentation of digital practices, bringing together unique perspectives and just all sorts of really fascinating people to come to discuss really weird ideas. It was there where I first encountered her work and I remember feeling dizzy after her talk because I couldn’t believe someone like Palmer existed.
Palmer is a speaker, artist, technologist and activist. She has broken ground on new mediums and forms of storytelling, working with neuroscience, artificial intelligence and filmmaking. She makes films, games, virtual realities, she codes, advocates and has been outspoken about issues of race and technology for years! To put it concisely, she is a futurist.
“My work combines, wearable technology, film, parkour, gaming functionality and neuroscience to create an immersive experience for the participant. Currently, I create neurogames. It’s a new and emerging field. I work at the intersection of game play and neuroscience.”
Karen Palmer is the Storyteller from the Future. Her work and projects have led to developments in AI, Immersive Storytelling, Neuroscience, Consciousness, and Implicit Bias. She has been at the forefront of activism around democratizing the development of Artificial Intelligence.
RIOT & The Future of Storytelling
Inspired by the events in Fergeson, MO, following the shooting of Micheal Brown, Palmer created RIOT, an emotionally responsive, live action film that uses AI and machine learning through facial recognition to allow participants to navigate through a dangerous riot.
- an emotionally responsive film – meaning that your emotions interact with the film. Your emotions dictate how different scenarios play out during the film.
- live action film that uses AI and machine learning through facial recognition – meaning Palmer is ahead of her time being outspoken about the implicit bias new technologies come loaded with. She has been an advocate in regards to issues on the forefront of privacy and security.
- allows participants to navigate through a dangerous riot – meaning four years ago Palmer engaged herself with complex themes and topics while breaking new ground on forms of storytelling.
Inspired by global unrest, Riot uses artificial intelligence, film and gaming technologies to help unpick how people react in stressful situations
RIOT! takes place in the world of a protest march in which the climate swiftly escalates into a dangerous riot. RIOT responds to the participants’ emotional state in real-time to engage and alter the video story journey.
The various characters within the film will respond to the users facial expression and emotional recognition which will influence the outcome of the interactions and as a consequence the users journey. Using branching video scenarios triggered by specially-written facial recognition software and neurogaming software written by researchers at the cutting edge of human-machine interface technology.
The RIOT! digital experience enables a self-awareness experience through tech and storytelling, to enhance the players cognitive skills through a unique multi-sensory experience.
The Film that Watches You Back…
AI Voyager to the Future
Your Brain is a Remote Control
Her latest installation is Perception iO, (Input Output)the pioneering new Law Enforcement Artificial Intelligence and Robotics System. Your perception (constructed from your emotional response and eye gaze) and your potential bias will become the training data for the Artificial Intelligence system. Currently on exhibition at Cooper Hewitt Museum.