Self Optimisation
Mon 08 Jan 2018

Self Optimization

by Marija Bozinovska Jones

Mon 08 Jan 2018
18.45 - 20.30
River Rooms
New Wing

What does self mean in an era of algorithmic logic?

The 'Quantified Self’ movement and traditional Buddhist practices both advocate self-improvement and self-discipline in order to thrive.

Self Optimization invites you to engage in a stimulating open conversation, addressing what constitutes a multifold and autonomous contemporary self.

Presented as a tea break serving raindrop cake and flowering tea, we will contemplate subjectivity, consciousness and intelligence and their artificial simulations.

The invited speakers will offer perspectives from their respective fields of expertise: buddhism, neuroscience, psychology and philosophy.


Ramon Amaro is a Lecturer in the Department of Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, London; Research Fellow in Digital Culture at Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam and visiting tutor in Media Theory at the Royal Academy of Art, The Hague (KABK). His research interests include machine learning, engineering, black ontology, and philosophies of the mind. He has presented conference papers at many institutions, including: Gasworks, ICA Studio, Goethe Institute and Tate Modern.

Marija Bozinovska Jones is a resident artist at Somerset House Studios. Her work revolves around identity formation in an era of technocapitalist amplification and perpetual online presence. Jones explores society’s coping mechanisms through Self Optimization and probes re-constructions of the self as a distributed identity through MBJ Wetware.

Alan Newman is a business psychologist who focuses on behavioural economics, innovation and entrepreneurship. He has a particular interest in how new technology influences behaviour. He has consulted for tech firms and financial services companies and has worked in Kenya, South Africa, and the Middle East as well the UK. He has spoken at several conferences and at a Quantified Self meeting in London.

David Pfau is an artificial intelligence researcher in London. He earned a PhD in neuroscience from Columbia University applying machine learning to neural data and brain-machine interfaces. He is interested in bringing new conceptual tools from physics to AI and brain science to build the next paradigm after deep learning.

Prajnamanas is a member of the Triratna Buddhist Order. He lives and works at the London Buddhist Centre, where he teaches meditation and Buddhism. His articles have appeared in the New Statesman and the Times Literary Supplement. He has also edited In Other Words, a journal for literary translators, and the London Buddhist.