Welcome from the President


Bernadette Bouchon-Meunier
President of the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society


Happy New Year 2020 to all of you and your families!

I am honored and happy to serve as the President of the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society in 2020–2021. At the beginning of this year, let us wish that 2020 will be a remarkable year, especially for Computational Intelligence.

One century ago, in 1920, the word “robot” appeared, coined by Karel Čapek in his science fiction play R. U. R.1 (Rossumovi univerzální roboti in Czech, translated as Rossum's Universal Robots). 1920 is also the year when the writer Isaac Asimov was born and everyone knows his Three Laws of Robotics, which he first published in 1942 in the novel Runaround. This novel was the first in a long series of stories in which he explored relations between humans and artifacts and questioned the applicability of these rules to robots in real-life situations with humans. Runaround and other novels were published in 1950, in the collection I, Robot2. It is also in 1950, seventy years ago, that Claude E. Shannon published his paper Programming a computer for playing chess3 the first paper proposing a computer program to play chess, a distant ancestor to AlphaGo. The same year, in 1950, Alan Turing published Computing Machinery and Intelligence4 in which he proposed to consider the question “Can machines think?” and described the “imitation game”, now known as the Turing test, a “big leap for mankind”, from my point of view. The “giant leap” made by Neil Armstrong on the moon in 1969 was more spectacular and historical, but this success would not have been possible without robotic spacecrafts taking photos of the moon and studying physical characteristics of the lunar soil to prepare the mission. It is clear that Artificial Intelligence, and especially learning, neural, fuzzy and evolutionary methods at the core of Computational Intelligence will have a major role to play in the future of space exploration, not to mention the improvement of everyday life on earth.

I wish all researchers in Computational Intelligence a very fruitful year 2020, in the wake of all achievements in Artificial Intelligence, furthering the production of intelligent technologies and autonomous robots at the service of man, in an ethical environment. Together, women and men, students or experts, from industry or universities, we can advance smart world while making efforts to be environmentally friendly.

I hope that I can meet each of you in at least one of the ten conferences sponsored by the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society this year. In particular, I will be happy to see you in Glasgow, UK, for IEEE WCCI 2020, July 19-24 (wcci2020.org) or in Canberra, Australia, for IEEE SSCI 2020, December 1-4 (ieeessci2020.org). Feel free to send me any suggestion or question at b.bouchon-meunier@ieee.org.


1 Karel Čapek, R.U.R., Rossumovi Univerzální Roboti, Aventinum, 1920.

2 Isaac Asimov, Runaround in I, Robot (The Isaac Asimov Collection ed.). New York City:
Doubleday, 1950.
3 Claude E. Shannon, Programming a computer for playing chess, The London, Edinburgh,
and Dublin Philosophical Magazine and Journal of Science, Series 7, Volume 41, Issue 314,
256-275, 1950.

4 Alan M. Turing, Computing machinery and intelligence. Mind, 59, 433-460, 1950.