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Who’s programming whom? Ranga Yogeshwar at CEBIT 2018

Ranga Yogeshwar is one of Germany’s best-known science journalists. He holds a degree in physics, is a bestselling author and is widely recognized as a thought leader and lateral thinker on the big scientific and social questions of our times. And on 13 June 2018, he will be on the d!talk stage at CEBIT in Hannover, Germany, where he will be sharing his vision of the next phase of our relationship with computers in a presentation titled "Who’s programming whom?"

18 Oct. 2017
Ranga Yogeshwar
Ranga Yogeshwar

Yogeshwar's presentation will revolve around one of the most important themes of the upcoming CEBIT show: artificial intelligence. "Artificial intelligence has the power to change the world and is one of the most exciting technological developments of our age,” commented Deutsche Messe Managing Board member Oliver Frese.

According to a recent study by the Boston Consulting Group, more and more businesses are running projects to test the applications of artificial intelligence. More than half of the German companies surveyed have already initiated AI pilot projects. About 85 percent of the executives surveyed believe that AI will give them a competitive advantage, and 75 percent believe AI will enable their companies to tap into new business areas.

It seems, then, that AI is set to play an increasingly significant role in our professional and personal lives. For Ranga Yogeshwar, this raises a number of questions. Just how much can we trust these intelligent systems? How much responsibility are we prepared to hand over to AI? How should we respond to the steadily growing capabilities of many areas of deep learning? As examples, he points to the analysis of X-ray images or recognition of road signs – areas where neural networks already outperform humans.

Yogeshwar believes that society as a whole needs to have a broad-based discussion on the applications and implications of AI. The trust and abdication implications can be illustrated by reference to the banking sector, where AI-based systems are already better than humans at making the kinds of judgments involved in assessing loan applications. The temptation here is to leave the decision entirely up to the algorithm – and risk having situations where a loan application is declined, but nobody knows why, because the algorithm is too complex to understand.

Ranga Yogeshwar's presentation is the opening address at the CEBIT Artificial Intelligence Summit, which will be held on 13 June. Running for the entire day, the summit will feature discussion on technological, commercial and ethical aspects of AI by international experts. Participation at the summit is free of charge for CEBIT visitors.

Ranga Yogeshwar was born in Luxembourg in 1959, the son of an Indian engineer and a Luxembourg artist. He holds a degree in physics from RWTH Aachen University and has worked at the Swiss Institute for Nuclear Research (SIN – now part of the Paul Scherrer Institute), CERN and the Forschungszentrum Jülich research institute (part of the Helmholtz Association). In 1987, he joined the editorial team at Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR), where he headed the broadcaster's Science Program Group for several years. He has been working as a freelance journalist and author since 2008.

Offer ends 31 October: CEBIT tickets for just 50 euros

Reduced-price "Pioneer” tickets are an ideal way to see Ranga Yogeshwar live on stage at CEBIT and save money. These €50 tickets can be ordered at . The offer closes on 31 October. The tickets are valid for admission on all days of CEBIT 2018; that is, they include the expo and conference program as well as the supporting program on the d!campus. After 31 October, ticket prices will increase in a series of graduated steps.


At CEBIT 2018, everything is geared to generating business, leads and bright ideas. CEBIT is a triple-punch event covering everything essential to the digitization of business, government and society. The innovations on display in the d!conomy section of the show give IT professionals and decision-makers, trade and the public sector the tools they need to streamline and futureproof their operations. The event’s d!tec showcase puts the spotlight on developers and startups. The d!talk conference program features visionaries, lateral thinkers, creatives and experts . The d!campus is heart of CEBIT –relaxed networking, street food and live music. The first day of CEBIT 2018 – Monday, 11 June – is reserved for conference attendees and journalists, with the exhibition opening on Tuesday, 12 June. The exhibition halls will be open Tuesday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., with the d!campus staying open till 11 p.m. Opening hours on Friday are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.


Gabriele  Dörries

Gabriele Dörries

Deutsche Messe
+49 511 89 - 31014