Weston’s free ‘Pop-Up University’ restarts; Free screening of ‘Coded Bias’ on facial recognition

Pop-Up University restarts for classes in March

The Weston Pop-Up University is returning in March with four weeks of classes, events and workshops led by local residents, all held virtually because of Covid-19 pandemic rules.

This year’s Pop-Up schedule includes nine on-line classes and workshops offering a wide variety of topics from Italian cooking lessons to dance instruction and wine tasting. The classes are led by people who have experience and expertise in an amazing array of areas – from tips on effective business leadership to an introduction to a fascinating and rare mammal – the pangolin!

Everyone is invited to participate and classes are free. Registration is required and some of the classes are limited in size. You can see the whole array of Pop-Up University classes and register at by clicking here.

Deb Granquist, one of the organizers, said, “This is our version of March Madness. We’re virtual this year, but hope to be back in person next year. In the meantime, this is a great chance to go on line, learn new things and have some fun. Hope to see you on Zoom!”

Facial recognition bias explored in documentary

Shalini Kantayya’s newest film, Coded Bias, will virtually screen for free across Vermont now through March 8.

Modern society sits at the intersection of two crucial questions: What does it mean when artificial intelligence increasingly governs our liberties? And what are the consequences for the people AI is biased against?

Coded Bias follows MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini’s startling discovery that many facial recognition technologies fail more often on darker-skinned faces. Buolamwini delves into an investigation of widespread bias in artificial intelligence and the person-made and machine-learned algorithms that drive it. As it turns out, AI is not neutral, and women are leading the charge to ensure our civil rights are protected.

To reserve your tickets and find out more click here.

For questions and inquiries, email: codedbiasvt@gmail.com

This Vermont screening is organized by partners from across the state who have been inspired to share this film and engage in conversations at the intersection of race and artificial intelligence: where a fight for civil rights will be waged in the 21st century.

The screening is made possible with leading financial support from the Vermont Community Foundation. Additional financial sponsors include Charlie MacFadyen and Tim O’Leary’s 2020 Rowland Foundation fellowship, Competitive Computing, FreshTracks Capital, Seven Days, Vermont-NEA, Vermont Racial Justice Alliance, the Vermont chapter of Women in Machine Learning and Data Science.

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Filed Under: Community & Arts in BriefCommunity and Arts Life

About the Author: This item was edited from one or more press releases submitted to The Chester Telegraph.

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