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Seymour Papert's theory of constructivism


The beginning of the Media Lab at MIT
Marvin Minsky Scientist
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Now, Papert and I had run the Media Lab for some years and then, Papert became more interested in applying his theories of education to actual children. So, for a period, the... the research on children separated from the artificial intelligence lab. And of course, if you’re teaching young children you need different facilities. The... the building codes have to be different so that there are more exits in case of fire and blah, blah... all sorts of restrictions. And as Nicholas’s Architecture Machine laboratory – which was in the architecture department – began to expand because of... the importance of computers in the 1950s was growing and growing and growing, he decided to expand and start the new laboratory – to be called the Media Laboratory – and got Seymour and I and a few other professors to... to be the pioneers of that.

Marvin Minsky (1927-2016) was one of the pioneers of the field of Artificial Intelligence, founding the MIT AI lab in 1970. He also made many contributions to the fields of mathematics, cognitive psychology, robotics, optics and computational linguistics. Since the 1950s, he had been attempting to define and explain human cognition, the ideas of which can be found in his two books, The Emotion Machine and The Society of Mind. His many inventions include the first confocal scanning microscope, the first neural network simulator (SNARC) and the first LOGO 'turtle'.

Listeners: Christopher Sykes

Christopher Sykes is a London-based television producer and director who has made a number of documentary films for BBC TV, Channel 4 and PBS.

Tags: The Architecture Machine, 1950s, Seymour Papert, Nicolas Negroponte

Duration: 1 minute, 29 seconds

Date story recorded: 29-31 Jan 2011

Date story went live: 13 May 2011