Astronaut Tim Peake to headline Edinburgh data summit

Peake is described as having a 'fascinating story to tell' and being an 'ideal speaker to headline DataFest20'. Picture: contributed.
Peake is described as having a 'fascinating story to tell' and being an 'ideal speaker to headline DataFest20'. Picture: contributed.
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A data and artificial intelligence (AI) festival taking place in Scotland next year has announced a key speaker – former International Space Station crew member Tim Peake.

The acclaimed astronaut is to headline the Data Summit in Edinburgh as part of DataFest – which is billed as the biggest event of its kind in the UK.

The announcement comes as festival organiser The Data Lab calls for fringe event submissions for the two-week festival that takes place across Scotland in March.

This year’s key theme “#BeyondData” will focus on the impact data and AI has on the world and the future potential of the sector to help realise innovation across business and wider society.

Data Lab said the signing of Peake marks the first major speaker announcement for the 2020 event, with more to follow in coming months.

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Peake, who spent six months on the international space station, completing about 3,000 orbits of the earth, said: “Space has always been at the forefront of technology and engineering, which is never more relevant than today.

“As we look to returning to the moon and exploring Mars, technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics, 3D printing and virtual reality are making our future missions possible. I’m delighted to be speaking at DataFest and sharing my story of space exploration and what the exciting future holds.”

Data Lab boss Gillian Docherty said Peake “has a fascinating story to tell” and is an “ideal speaker to headline DataFest20”.