World's first AI safety summit to be held at Bletchley Park, home of WWII codebreakers

With world governments and AI leaders in attendance, this November's summit could be a catalyst for the creation of momentous AI policy.
Written by Sabrina Ortiz, Editor
Bletchley Park
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The rise of generative artificial intelligence (AI) has heralded a new era of innovation -- and now world leaders will return to the roots of computing for the world's first AI Summit. 

On Thursday, the UK government announced that Bletchley Park, which it referred to as "one of the birthplaces of computer science", will host the UK AI Safety Summit on November 1-2. The summit will include international government officials, AI company leaders, and AI experts.

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Topics that will be discussed are the risks of AI, how these threats can be mitigated at the international level through coordinated action, and the creation of a shared approach to safe technological development.

"With the combined strength of our international partners, thriving AI industry and expert academic community, we can secure the rapid international action we need for the safe and responsible development of AI around the world," said U.K. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. 

The summit's location is noteworthy because it holds historical significance in the area of computer science and innovation, mainly for its role as a codebreaking center in World War Two. 

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Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire was home to British Enigma codebreaking, as well as other Nazi code cracking done by the codebreakers during World War Two. The efforts at Bletchley Park ultimately helped the Allies win the war. 

"It is fitting that the very spot where leading minds harnessed emerging technologies to influence the successful outcome of World War Two will, once again, be the crucible for international coordinated action," said Iain Standen, CEO of the Bletchley Park Trust.

One of the most notable figures to have worked at Bletchley Park is Alan Turing. He was one of the leading developers of the Bombe, which is a machine that was used to help decipher encrypted messages sent by the Enigma machine during the war. 

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Turing is also considered a trailblazer in the field of computer science. He was the creator of the Turing Machine, which is considered the first conceptualization of a computer. 

Bletchley Park is now a museum that garners over 250,000 visitors a year. It's fitting that the birthplace of computer science will be the location for a summit that will help create a pathway for the responsible development of generative AI. 

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