A Tribute to Stephen Hawking with Stories from Richard Garriott and Stephen Wolfram
Join us for a tribute to the late, world-renowned physicist and true visionary, Stephen Hawking. We’ll have physicist and author of “A New Kind of Science” Stephen Wolfram along with entrepreneur and private astronaut Richard Garriott telling stories about Stephen Hawking and explaining his contributions to physics and society.
Creative Director – PORTALARIUM
Richard Garriott de Cayeux is a founding father of the video game industry and the commercial spaceflight industry, a flown astronaut, and an accomplished explorer.
He has been inducted into the computer gaming hall of fame and has received the industry lifetime achievement award. He is credited with creating the now ubiquitous term “avatar” for one’s virtual self and the category of massively multiplayer games (MMORPGs). He authored the acclaimed Ultima Series and has built 3 leading gaming companies: Origin Systems (sold to Electronic Arts), Destination Games (sold to NCsoft) and Portalarium where he is building Shroud of the Avatar, the successor to his previous works.
As a principal shaper of the commercial spaceflight industry, he co-founded Space Adventures, the only company to arrange space flights for private citizens and is the sixth private astronaut to live aboard the International Space Station. The son of a NASA astronaut, he became the first second-generation astronaut and has been a key leader in civilian and commercial space as an investor and Board member of institutions such as the X-Prize Foundation, Space Adventures, and Planetary Resources.
Richard is an avid explorer, having traveled around the globe from the jungles of the Amazon to the South Pole, the deep seas of the Titanic and hydrothermal vents to orbiting the earth aboard the International Space Station. His non-profit and philanthropic works include serving on the boards of The Explorers Club and The Challenger Center for Science Education.
Richard lives with his wife Laetitia, also an entrepreneur, and their two children, Kinga Shuilong & Ronin Phi.
His new book, “Explore/Create,” chronicles his life from the early days of video gaming, through his spaceflight and to the present day.
CEO – WOLFRAM RESEARCH
Stephen Wolfram is the creator of Mathematica, Wolfram|Alpha and the Wolfram Language; the author of A New Kind of Science; and the founder and CEO of Wolfram Research. Over the course of nearly four decades, he has been a pioneer in the development and application of computational thinking—and has been responsible for many discoveries, inventions, and innovations in science, technology and business.
Wolfram began the development of Mathematica in late 1986. The first version of Mathematica was released on June 23, 1988, and was immediately hailed as a major advance in computing. In the years that followed, the popularity of Mathematica grew rapidly, and Wolfram Research became established as a world leader in the software industry, widely recognized for excellence in both technology and business. From its beginnings as a technical computing system, Mathematica has grown dramatically in scope over the years—and over the course of more than a quarter of a century, it has been responsible for many important inventions and discoveries in a vast range of fields and industries, as well as being a central tool in the education of generations of students.
In 1991, Wolfram began to divide his time between Mathematica development and scientific research. Building on his work from the mid-1980s, and now with Mathematica as a tool, Wolfram made a rapid succession of major new discoveries. By the mid-1990s his discoveries led him to develop a fundamentally new conceptual framework, which he then spent the remainder of the 1990s applying not only to new kinds of questions but also to many existing foundational problems in physics, biology, computer science, mathematics and several other fields.
After more than ten years of highly concentrated work, Wolfram finally described his achievements in his 1200-page book A New Kind of Science. Released on May 14, 2002, the book was widely acclaimed and immediately became a bestseller.
Building on Mathematica and the ideas of A New Kind of Science, Wolfram embarked on a still more ambitious project: constructing a system that would make as much of the world’s knowledge as possible immediately computable and accessible to everyone. The release of Wolfram|Alpha in May 2009 was widely regarded as a historic step that has defined a new dimension for computation and artificial intelligence—and is now relied on by millions of people every day to compute answers both directly and through intelligent assistants such as Siri.
In 2014 Wolfram made another breakthrough, building on Mathematica and Wolfram|Alpha to create the Wolfram Language. Based on the unprecedentedly deep technology stack that Wolfram has developed over the course of three decades, the Wolfram Language introduces the new concept of a knowledge-based language, in which immense knowledge about computation and the world is integrated, and a new level of highly automated programming becomes possible.