From Idea to Innovation: The Impactful University, followed by Pennovation Center Groundbreaking

Panelists: Amy Gutmann, moderator and Walter Isaacson

Announcer: Ladies and gentlemen, presenting the president of the University of Pennsylvania, Amy Gutmann.

Amy Gutmann: Thank you. Good afternoon, everyone. It's wonderful. Good afternoon, everyone. Yes. Welcome to the 2014 Silfen University Forum. Today, we're going to have a fascinating conversation about innovation. The question naturally arises what is the greatest innovation in the history of humankind. Got that question? Luckily, I have an answer for you. It comes from an unimpeachably witness, someone who has actually been around for most of recorded history. It comes from the 2000-year old man. Take a watch.

--Animation is played of a Mel Brooks' skit entitled “2000-Year-Old Man”.

Cartoon Interviewer: In the 2000 years you've lived, you've seen a lot. What is the biggest change you've seen? (quick slideshow history of inventions)

Cartoon Old Man: In 2000 years, the greatest thing mankind ever devised, I think in my humble opinion, is Saran Wrap. You can put a sandwich in it. You can walk through it. You can touch it and put it all the way up your face and twirl around and everything. It's so good you can wrap it up…

Cartoon Interviewer: You equate this with…

Cartoon Old Man: I love it. You can put three olives in it and put a little one in it. Ham sandwiches, whatever you want. It clings and it sticks. You can look right through it.

Cartoon Interviewer: You equate this with a man's discovery of space? (animation of rocket ship launching)

Cartoon Old Man: That was good. (laughter)

Amy Gutmann: That was good too. You got to love Mel Brooks. For those of you who might not have picked it up, the greatest invention of all mankind and one of my favorite comic routines is Saran wrap, but in fact, the story of Saran wrap bears on our discussion today. It is actually an instructive tale of innovation. The real discovery of saran wrap occurred inadvertently. I see our dean of engineering looking very attentively, and our dean of medicine looking very attentively. Dow scientists were working on synthesizing a new solvent for commercial dry-cleaning. The flasks they use needed to be cleaned and that task of cleaning of flasks went to a 22-year...old college intern, Ralph Wiley.

However, there was one set of flasks coated with something that wouldn't wash off. No chemical solvents could remove it. Wiley brought the substance to the attention of the senior researchers in the lab who saw potential and developed it. Initially marketed as a seawater and chemical resistant spray coating during the Second World War, the military would coat their fighter planes with it before putting them on cargo ships for transport to Europe and the Pacific Theater. After the war, Dow scientists discovered how to make saran into the thin film that we know as saran wrap. It was Dow's first entry into the consumer products market, which grew to become a major component of the company's business eventually accounting for hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue.

There's a lesson here, and it bears on any discussion of innovation. We can bring the best people together with the best resources as Dow did in the 1930s. We can confidently expect that innovations will occur, but we can't predict what the outcome will be. That remains the great unknown in our discussion today. The future of innovation is all the more exciting because we don't know for certain what it will bring. That is why universities are so important as stimulators, as incubators of great research and discoveries whose consequences as we do them are truly unknown, but if we do enough, if we do them well enough, if we bring the right mix of people together, if we see them with the right resources what we can be certain of is something unexpected and good will happen.

There's no more fitting way to consider these possibilities than with this Silfen University Forum a public discussion of globally important issues featuring some of the world's foremost thinkers. It is made possible through the visionary support of University trustee, David Silfen and his wife, Lyn, two great friends of Penn for whose generosity we are deeply grateful. They wish they could be here today, but I ask you all to give them a big round of applause, and I will convey it to them. Thank you.

The thread of innovation courses through the history and geography of the University of Pennsylvania. It is the heart of our Penn compact 2020. Innovation is at the heart, inclusion, innovation, and impact. It builds on our rich history of creative discovery. We have the minds, we have the resources and the vision to expand innovation at Penn even further. That is what this conversation for us at Penn is ultimately about here to make sure that engine becomes ever more powerful moving forward.

In the years to come here at a place we're going to call this whole campus here, we're going to call Pennovation Works, we will translate new Penn ideas and research into products, into ventures, into services that will change the world. Innovation will be the key. It will determine how we conquer the greatest challenges faced by humankind whether it is the threat of climate change, the need to feed a global population projected to grow to nine billion by mid-century, or the specter of pandemic disease.
We expect the Pennovation Center to be the dynamic centerpiece of our effort. We will ceremonially break ground on the center at the conclusion of this program. Our special guest today who fits in the great tradition that we've begun with the Silfen Forum is uniquely qualified to talk about where all of this is leading us.

Walter Isaacson has been called America's esteemed biographer of geniuses. He has written books about Albert Einstein; Henry Kissinger; my favorite of course, Benjamin Franklin; and an internationally best-selling biography of Steve Jobs. Most recently, he is the author of a book appropriately titled and subtitled, The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution. This was published earlier this month to considerable interest and very strong reviews. With previous roles as the editor of Time Magazine, chairman and CEO of CNN, and beginning in 2003 as president and CEO of The Aspen Institute, Walter Isaacson has earned renown, not only for writing clear and compelling prose, a rare talent. He also brings balanced imagination and true insight to some of the most important discussions of our day. I know we're in for a treat and I am tremendously pleased and honored to welcome a great biographer, a great thinker, and a wonderful friend, Walter Isaacson, to Penn. Please, join me in welcoming Walter Isaacson.

Walter Isaacson: Thank you. By the way, Benjamin Franklin would be really proud of all of you.

Amy Gutmann: Great.

Walter Isaacson: He wanted this to be a center of innovation and Penn still is.

Amy Gutmann: Well, it's great to have you here, Walter. It really is. I'm going to not fire, but pepper some questions to you beginning with before the innovators. You wrote one of the greatest biographies of Benjamin Franklin who is near and dear to our heart. If Benjamin Franklin could join us here today, say a little about what you think his view would be about the state of innovation and exploration in America today generally and more particularly on university campuses.

Walter Isaacson: Well, first of all, I think he would be thrilled. He was a total geek. He would have pulled out your Android or my iPhone and said, "Show me the apps." He would love the Information age economy. One of the things that makes America in my mind so great as an innovative economy and the information age is that we're comfortable with the free flow of information. Unlike many countries I've been to, China, you name it, Russia, whatever, in Middle East where they're trying to censor the free flow of information, ever since Thomas Paine use Benjamin Franklin's printing press to make pamphlets to get handouts on the streets of this town, we have said, "Okay. It's a mess. We don't like what all that stuff on the internet, but somehow, it's part of our genetic code that we deal with it, that we like it, and that we think that the free flow of ideas is good.” That was so ingrained in Ben Franklin.

The second thing that was ingrained in him and that is ingrained in this new Pennovation Center is that the academy should be connected to enterprise. There's notion that you keep the academy separate, which poor Thomas Jefferson had at UVA. Ben Franklin rejects with the academy for the Education of Youth in Pennsylvania or in Philadelphia. That is the precursor of Penn. He loves turning--he once said, when he was doing the electricity experiments, which were actually the most important experiments of the time done right here on the banks or the river, he said, "The only problem we have is that we have yet to find practical use for these experiments."

Amy Gutmann: There's another example.

Walter Isaacson: He said like “Newton ... It was great that Newton did the laws of gravity, but you don't need the laws of gravity to know that if you let go of your crockery, it'll fall and break.” He said, “So we must find use for the electricity experiments.” That's when he does the kite flying, the lightning rod, the battery that stores the electricity. So that is the tradition that Ben Franklin said both for America and for this institution.

Amy Gutmann: Right. It took a long time before Thomas Edison actually made good on Ben Franklin. Let me just ask you in this regard since there's nothing more important in American society for innovation than that free flow of ideas. Then, you said the application of them. So within universities, I think everybody is committed to the free flow of ideas, but there's sometimes some resistance to the idea of translating while we're at a university, translating the ideas into the marketplace, the partnership with industry, which you and I both believe is really equally essential to happen. Say a little bit about how you think universities, to take a random example like the University of Pennsylvania, how we can make sure that we do partner with industry and at the same time maintain the free flow, the openness of ideas because unlike industry, we publish everything in the open marketplace.

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. There's always a bit of a tension. One of the things you've done here is make this translational, your vision for the Pennovation Center. You're going to turn theory into practical ideas. Vannevar Bush, who's one of the heroes of my book and somebody you would know but I'm sure many people have not heard of, was somebody who was Provost at MIT, a founder of Raytheon and oversaw the government war research during World War Two. So right afterwards, he writes a piece called “Science and Next Frontier” in which he calls for a three-way collaboration between government, private corporations, and the universities to do the basic research that he said would be the seed corn for inventions of the future. That's why you see such wonderful things at MIT, or your Stanford here, Harvard that eventually grow up to try to do that. Now, we will talk in a little while, and I don't want to leap too much ahead about Penn's seminal role in the invention of the first computer which was done at Penn. We'll talk about in a minute, but to leap ahead a minute, the one sort of mistake Penn made was in 1946, which was, they didn't answer your question properly.

Amy Gutmann: Yes. Let me then tell, I think it's really important that you tell the story of ENIAC, of when Penn got it right which is very featured in the innovators

Walter Isaacson: Chapters of it.

Amy Gutmann: If there isn't a sufficient reason to read it, that is sufficient reason for everybody here to buy it and read it, start with what Penn got it right and how important that is. Then, tell what happened that we let, how we let the ball drop because the story that we're all here today is we're picking up that ball and running with it now and going to continue. This is really an important story. Begin with ENIAC.

Walter Isaacson: When you talk about what is the first computer, you can look at Colossus which was done to break the German code in England with Alan Turing, but it's a special purpose machine IT is done for one thing. Likewise, John Vincent Adam Nassau has a little thing in the basement at Iowa State but he can't really get it working. What happens is at Penn, you get the first programmable electronic computer.

Amy Gutmann: I'm going to pause because we brought a picture. Let's show what that-

Walter Isaacson: ENIAC.

Amy Gutmann: computer ...

Walter Isaacson: There is our friend. There is Jean Jennings and Frances Bilac. We will get to the women too.

Amy Gutmann: There you go.

Walter Isaacson: What happens is there's a wonderful guy, John Mauchly. Is Bill here? Wave your hand.

Amy Gutmann: Bill, there.

Walter Isaacson: All right. Bill Mauchly, standing up. I'm going to tell a story about his mom and his dad. Bill's dad, John Mauchly, was one of those ultimate in collaborative scientists. He grows up, his father’s at the Carnegie Institute, he just loves putting things together. He decides to wander around the country in the early 1940s to figure out how to do a computer. He goes to Harvard with Grace Hopper and Howard Aiken, building an electromechanical one. He even drives to Iowa State to see this guy out of NASA for days with Bill's older brother in the car probably yelling and screaming.

He's like a bumblebee. He picks up ideas everywhere, cross-pollinates it and finally brings it back to Penn. This is where the government comes in too. World War Two was starting. He's at Ursinus College. He says, "This ain't going to work. I need to be at Penn if I'm going to do something. He gets a government grant to study at Penn and to form a group there. At Penn, he's a visionary, but vision without execution is just hallucination. He finds somebody you all would probably know if you're a true Philadelphian. A guy named Presper Eckert, J. Presper Eckert. Pres Eckert's great-grandfather here invented the taffy machine or the whatever that is, sea water taffy machine.

Amy Gutmann: Bonomo's Turkish Taffy.

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. Turkish taffy machines. Somebody who really knew how to engineer. They form an alliance here at Penn to create a computer. Then, they find six great women Ph.D.s in math. One of the things that surprised me…

Amy Gutmann: Listen up out there. This is really, really important.

Walter Isaacson:... is that more women went into math in the 1930s than a generation later. Now, the boys with their toys start making the hardware was the important stuff, so they assigned the women just to do the reprogramming of the cables and the software. It turns out they were wrong. The hardware becomes almost commoditized. It's the software that becomes important. Then, they have about 50 mechanics, people with grease under the fingernails, to build this huge computer. They build ENIAC at the Moore School of Engineering here at Penn. It becomes the first programmable all-purpose computer. It's mainly to do ballistic missile trajectories, but the women are brought in because John von Neumann comes here at the Penn from Los Alamos. They got to do Edward Teller's implosion theory for the type of atom bomb, the Super. And they have to reprogram the machine. They're seeing the women know how to do it, unplugging the cables like you saw on that picture. They do that test and everything else. Now, I'm going to go to two bad moments for Penn, if you forgive me.

Amy Gutmann: No.

Walter Isaacson: One bad moment is after they do this all in secrecy with these awesome six women programming it, they finally unveil it on Valentine's Day of 1946 because it's been kept secret until then. People are invited to the Penn. It's on the front page in the New York Times. All these generals come from Washington. These two women, Frances Bilac and Jean Jennings stay up all night because there's still one last glitch in the program. They conquered about five in the morning, and the program works beautifully with all the lights blinking, huge applause. Then, everybody goes to Houston Hall for the candlelit black-tie dinner, and the women aren't invited. They take the bus back to their apartments on Valentine's Day, a very cold February night.

Now, to make up for it perhaps, John Mauchly, Presper Eckert, something else happens that's a little bit of problem with Penn. They want the intellectual property rights. John von Neumann wants the intellectual property rights and the Moore School hasn't figured out what you've been able to figure out is, how do we all capitalize on this.

Number two, Ken made a mistake, I think, in thinking that computers, well, that's just practical tools.

Amy Gutmann: That is absolutely key. I think this is the other for us. We've taken this to heart, but let's listen up and never forget this.

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. They think, "Okay. It's practical that's something commercial. We're an academy. We're theoretical.” By the way, Harvard is doing the same thing with Howard Aiken and Grace Hopper who are building the Mark I. Howard Aiken has to get around the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Science by joining the Navy and then having the Navy take over the Harvard facility making it a Naval facility during the war.

So Penn is not comfortable with its faculty with Turning and nor is the Institute of Advanced Studies. It's a problem back then. They all think this is too practical and commercial. So what happens is, John Mauchly leaves Penn along with Presper Eckert and they start UNIVAC down the street to make up for not having invited the women. Five of the six women if I have it right, Bill, are invited to join UNIVAC. They even hired Grace Hopper from Harvard because, at this point, they realized, "Oh yeah, we need the women programmers."

The sixth woman was a woman named Kay McNulty who was the sixth woman programmer on the ENIAC. She was the one who did something amazing. From 100 years earlier, Ada Lovelace, who was the first woman programmer, came up with the notion of subroutines that you could save space in computer by having a library of subroutines. Kay McNulty invents the subroutines. Then, Bill Mauchly, I mean John Mauchly proposes marriage. Kay is Bill's mother. She works both at UNIVAC but also as they get married. It all ends up happy in the end.

Amy Gutmann: Happily ever after. I want to talk a little bit about the innovators and how this has been a decade-long or more project of yours, but in the meantime, before and in the meantime, you have been rightly noted as the biographer of geniuses, one genius at a time.

Walter Isaacson: As Henry Kissinger will tell you.

Amy Gutmann: Right. Well, there are some exceptions here, but pretty eminent people and pretty smart too, but certainly Benjamin Franklin, Steve Jobs, they're single guys who you are fascinated by and the world is fascinated by. Then, you're working on the innovators which I take one of the big lessons of the innovators is the lesson of collaboration for creation. Was there something about working on the geniuses that led you to the collaboration or is this just two different stories entirely?

Walter Isaacson: No. It's very connected. You’re social scientists and a writer say you've got this. We biographers who often aren't welcome in the academy because the academy knows and we know we distort history slightly. We make it into a narrative. We make it seem like there's a gal or a guy in the garret or garage who has a lightbulb moment and the world changes when, in fact, that's not really true. History is made not just by singular individuals but by social and collaborative movement. I knew that.

What particularly got to me, I had been gathering strength for 15, 20 years ever since. I was in charge of new media for Time Magazine and Time Incorporated because I was interviewing all the people who had done the internet, the original computers. It was cool because if your at Time, you get to meet not only Bill Gates and Steve Jobs but going more and Andy Grove and the people. So I was saying, "Okay. There's a history of the digital revolution and here somewhere. We've written about the American Revolution, the French Revolution and Scientific, but we don't know who the heroes of the digital revolution."

I was collecting all that. I realized that, this notion that biographers distort history, I should make it into what it really was, which was a collaborative social and team movements. It particularly struck me when Steve Jobs was dying, I asked him a question. Because I was looking under him as a singular romantic genius. I said to him, "What is the product you're most proud of inventing?” The Mac, iPad, iPhone I thought he'd say. He said, "No. You weren't listening to me." Steve could be rude at times. He said, “Making a product is hard, but what's really hard is making a team that will continue to be innovative to put together the environment of innovation. The most important product I helped to create was Apple not any one of the products.” And so I realized that I should try to do a book, and whether it's ... I'll go back to your computer. John Vincent Atanasoff sitting there doing it in a basement in Iowa, is the classic thing a biographer would love--the lone romantic inventor, with all due respect toward Jane Smiley, the novelist who does “The Man Who Invented The Computer” where she's wrong, they didn't, his computer didn't work.

Likewise, Henry Evans, all these people who are romantic writers. They look at that. When I was looking at the fact that he couldn't get his computer to work because he had no team around him, and when he leaves to join the Navy, they don't even know what it is in this basement of this physics building they dismantle it and throw it away. The only reason it's saved for history is John Mauchly had driven for days, saw it and then gotten to an intellectual property patent dispute for 10 years afterward about who had the copyrights on it, but I realized it was the team at Penn that made it really work not the loner in Iowa. So I decided to do a book that emphasized whether it's Mauchly, Eckert and the women and the mechanics here or the people who do the internet, that teamwork is the key to creativity.

Amy Gutmann: That's terrific because collaboration is endemic to great universities and how we are organized and so on, but I think it's particularly fascinating, Walter, that Steve Jobs recognized that too, because Steve ... Say a little bit. I think people would be interested in…

Walter Isaacson: The minute he said that.

Amy Gutmann: He's the face of Apple, but did he realize that a significant part of his success and Apple's success was that he put together and people working with him put together a fabulous team of very multi-talented people?

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. That was his point when he said that to me nearing the end of his life, and I thought back, or he made me think back, to the very beginning with the original Mac team in the early 1980s. I had interviewed every one of them, Andy Hertzfeld and Joanna Hoffman and Susan Kerr, and all these people. There were 30 of them. They put a pirate flag on top of the building in Cupertino where the Mac team he created was. Every single one of them told me what a jerk he was. They actually have a technical term for it on the other coast that starts with an A. I won't use it on the East Coast. They all said he was just such a pain. Then, they all said, "but I would not have given up the chance to have been on his team for anything else that happened in my life. I would walk through walls with them." I realized that this original Mac team was the tightest band of pirates I'd ever seen.

Then, I realized as he was dying, there's Tim Cook and Jony Ive, and Phil Schiller, and Eddy Cue and all these people. All these nice, sweet, but a little bit possessive types and other companies. People keep quitting. You look at Hewlett-Packard every place. Everybody's leaving. Nobody left working for Steve. It's that ability to both have a vision and then make people want to join you in the march.

Amy Gutmann: It was the creativity and the sense of progress that made people want to stay.

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. You have to be a romantic visionary to create a team, but bigger romantic visionary without a team, as I say, is just hallucinating.

Amy Gutmann: It is amazing. I don't know. I assume all of you saw Timothy Cook is breaking other barriers as well. That's really exciting.

Walter Isaacson: It's good to see Tim Cook. One of the things people always ask me which I never answer which is, “if Tim Cook puts out a watch what would Steve think? What would Steve think?” One of the things Steve said at the end as well to me, as well as to Tim Cook, was that the people at Apple, the reason they're such a good team, is they don't wake up every morning saying what would Steve think.

Amy Gutmann: Very important. Let's talk a little bit more about the role of women and technology. Tell a little bit of the story of Ada Lovelace because the bookends of the book are, this, I knew a lot of the characters in the book, but I must confess, Walter, I didn't know the story of Ada Lovelace and why is she an important character in the digital revolution.

Walter Isaacson: I will say something that you can relate to. In fact, I probably even told you when it was happening, is my daughter, Betsy, when she was entering her senior year in high school which was five or six, seven years ago, she was supposed to, obviously being applying to college, be writing her essay. We, being the type of parents, everybody in this room is whether you admit it or not, were hovering thinking, "Hey, have you done your essay yet? Can we read it? Can we help?" We think we're supposed to. Betsy, those of you who know her, was having none of that, intentionally driving her mother to distraction by refusing to say…

One day, she walks downstairs and tells me, "Okay. I've done the essay." I said, what was it on. She says, Ada Lovelace. I say, "Who's Ada Lovelace?" She explains that first woman programmer of computer, everything else.

Amy Gutmann: I hope you're sharing the royalties on your book with her.

Walter Isaacson: How public are we right here, right? Good. If it's, no tweeting this, but my daughter is now trying to write a book on Ada Lovelace. I don't know if she'll share the royalties with me either. Anyway, we began looking. Betsy helped me figure out Ada Lovelace. She does a few things. Ada Lovelace, as those of you may know, is the only legitimate child of Lord Byron, the romantic poet.

As she is growing up, Lady Byron is not particularly fond of Lord Byron. You can ask any English literature Department why but Lord Byron-

Amy Gutmann: I know that story. It's overdetermined, by the way.

Walter Isaacson: Right. Anyway, Lady Lovelace decides that Ada will be tutored almost exclusively in mathematics as if that's an antidote for being a romantic poet. It does not work as an antidote. Ada becomes a great mathematician, but she also loves poetry. She practices what she calls poetical science. As her mother is taking her ... By the way, this is an important thing that Penn does which is connecting humanities to the science. That is where all creativity happens. Now, people always say we need arts and humanities and that make sure we have STEAM and not STEM, yeah. But if you're art and humanities, make sure you know what the transition does.

Amy Gutmann: Well, both of us moved. I began as a math major. You began as a geek if I must say. I qualified as a geek too when we both went into the humanities and social sciences. That movement is made possible and encouraged by the kind of education.

Walter Isaacson: Well, this type of liberal arts educator does. She had that. Her mom takes her to see the mechanical looms and industrial Revolution England in the 1830s. Her father, Lord Byron is a Luddite. I mean that literally because his only speech in the House of Lords is defending the followers of Ned Ludd who are smashing those looms because they think they're putting people out of work. Ada looks at the punch cards that are instructing the looms how to do patterns. She says, "Oh, I get it, because she has a friend named Charles Babbage who's doing a numerical calculator." She says with the punch cards, you could instruct the calculator to do things, not just numbers but anything that could be noted in symbols or patterns, music, words, ie, a general-purpose computer.

She writes and publishes which is unusual for a woman at the time in a scientific journal the notes that tell you how to do a general-purpose computer. Secondly, she publishes the first computer program because she wants to show how that would work. Some people say, "Well, she wasn't quite as good in math as they thought." I say, "Okay. You tell me an algorithm for generating Bernoulli numbers. Go ahead. Take your time," because it took me about four days to even figure out how you create the sequence of Bernoulli numbers. She got it. She did it great.

The only thing she says which is particularly interesting is that machines will be able to do everything. There'll be general-purpose. The only thing they won't be able to do is think. They will never originate thought or have imagination. That's why you need to connect the humans to the technology.

Amy Gutmann: Walter, if I read you right in the innovators, and I think for me, this is a fascinating philosophical part of a book that's full of really interesting history as well, Walter, I think you tip your hand in favor of Ada's view that computers will never fully think, will not be human. Why don't you say a little about the debate that, because it's an academic debate that has real consequences for the way we organize our technology, our science?

Walter Isaacson: And what you're going to do in the Pennovation.

Amy Gutmann: And what we're going to do in the Pennovation.

Walter Isaacson: Yeah.

Amy Gutmann: I think this is ... If you will, one of the deepest parts of the book.

Walter Isaacson: Right. I did not enter with a preconception. I'm not sure what life will be like 100 years from now, but I did say let's look at the trajectory of the revolution. You have two strands; one I call the Ada Lovelace strand that's connecting the imagination of humans and what human minds do best with what machines do best will produce the greatest creativity and the greatest power. A hundred years to the day almost that Ada has done this, Alan Turing writes a paper. You will see a movie in about three weeks or your kids will drag you to because Benedict Cumberbatch's playing Turing in a movie called “The Imitation Game” which is going to be released in early November.

It's about a test that everybody now knows is a Turing test, but he called “The Imitation Game.” He does it. When he writes the paper on it, he calls it ... The title of the section is Lady Lovelace's Objection so that even though you and I may not have known much about Ada Lovelace, Alan Turing does. It goes back 100 years, reads his paper and says, "Okay." She says machines will never think how would we test that. He comes up with the imitation game. You put a machine and a human in some other room. You send in questions. If after a while you can't tell the difference between human and machine, there's no meaningful reason to say the machine's not thinking.

Amy Gutmann: This is an ongoing competition.

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. By the way, the Turing test is still the, by far, twice as much as one of the most debated topics in cognitive and computer science, millions of it. Every year, people claim, whatever. Well, in the end…

Amy Gutmann: There's a lot at stake here besides innovation. There's at stake whether if a computer can convince you that he loves you, whether you don't need anything more than that.

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. That works in the fantasy movies with Siri, but surprisingly, the other strand of computer history that I call the Ada Lovelace strand which is often called the augmentation rather than artificial intelligence strand, which is let's not try to aim for artificial intelligence. Let's aim for augmenting what humans and computers do and what they can do together. That strand is led by Vannevar Bush who I mentioned earlier who writes As We May Think and comes up with the notion of a personal computer connected to us by JCR Licklider at MIT who creates the air defense systems and makes it very tightly bound that here's what human mind can do best. Here's what the machine can do best. Let's have an interface that worked all the way through Doug Engelbart, Alan Kay and culminating, to some extent, with Steve Jobs who makes all of our devices much more personal, we're wearing on our wrists or whatever.

That strand has, so far, surpassed the expectation of computers becoming more personal and more integrated in our lives. The strand of aiming for artificial intelligence, where machines will think without us, has always been… It'll happened in 20 years. In 1950, I can show you in near times, or in 20 years, a lot of machines that will be able to replace humans. Every decade, it's 20 years away. It's a mirage. Someday, the singularity may happen, but aiming for it in the Pennovation Center will probably be spinning your wheels. What you should do is aim for that augmentation of human and computer creativity.

Amy Gutmann: Great. We are going to bring arts and culture innovation as well as science and engineering, as well as medical innovation altogether because that cross-pollination from what you have done historically and what we have seen contemporaneously is very fertile.

Walter Isaacson: Let me make a point on that which is when we talk about innovators, it ends up being the digital revolution information technology. There are many reasons why. That's been the narrative over the past 50 years. It's also easier. There's less government regulation. In a garage, you can build Apple or Microsoft. The harder innovation is what's coming next, which is in the biomedical sciences, the wetware labs. You're going to have in that building almost as many wetware labs as Silicone labs. I'll call it digital labs. That is why Penn is so well placed compared to Stanford or the Valley. You need to have great medical centers, great medical research. You need to break down the silos between chemistry, biology, and information technology.

Amy Gutmann: Yeah. That really we have to not only do it but keep doing it. I just want, because all of this is very positive, I want to ask you a hard question which I don't know the answer to, but I hope you will. Women have played a very important role in technology. Here's a shocking figure that I want you to ponder. We all should recognize this. In 1985, 37% of undergraduate degrees in computer science went to women, were earned by women. Fast forward to 2010, and that number's been cut in half to 18%. We'd love to see the history of the world as a world of progress, but if we are going to compete as a country on our creative people power have the number of women over this period, what can we do?

Walter Isaacson: Why would it go down and have it cut in half. Partly, there have people told women they can't do math which I won't name names which is an incorrect statement. When my daughter did Ada Lovelace ...

Amy Gutmann: Because you and I both have daughters…

Walter Isaacson: Who did math and science.

Amy Gutmann: …who did math and science and are thriving. I think Betsy will thrive, and my daughter …

Walter Isaacson: Betsy said girls who code get jobs. They're going to thrive in the economy. It's partly because it's not overt discrimination because it is true. If a woman gets a degree in engineering and coding and software, whatever, she's a pretty important hire, because companies do. 86% of the engineers of Google are men. People at Google are actually trying to recruit women. If you put out more engineers, they will get jobs. Betsy said where we talk about Ada Lovelace, she said, "The first time I realized or had a role model for a woman who could do computers was in a Batman comic. There was a woman in a Batman comic who programmed. I never knew women could program.” Now, that's why she discovered Ada Lovelace.

I think one problem is not the main reason we've gone from 38% to 70% or whatever in women doing computer science, but one problem is they don't have role models and that's particularly bad because they should have role models because there are role models, but they've been written out of history which is why I really was so happy to discover and then celebrate them in this book.

Amy Gutmann: I applaud you for that. I think it will make ... I really believe it can help.

Walter Isaacson: I became an electronics geek and loved soldering circuits and making ham radios and stuff like that because my dad's an electrical engineer. All my uncles are electrical engineers. I had role models. I do think that whether it's you or Megan Smith, the new chief technology officer of the United States, or Sheryl Sandberg, we got to celebrate the role models. That's not the only reason for the decline of women in computer science. There's some cultural and hackathon and gaming and all these things that are a little difficult for me to go in. It's not my field, but the one field I can say is, if you don't have role models you're not going to do something.

Amy Gutmann: Our engineering school has really done, under Eduardo Glandt, really done great work in recruiting more and more young women into engineering which is extremely important. Let me shift focus because I want to open ... I'm going to open up for questions at five minutes. Get your questions ready, but let me shift focus something we haven't talked about which is government's support for innovation. Are we losing our edge in this country? How concerned should we be about it? What can we do about it?

Walter Isaacson: The answer is yes. We should be phenomenally concerned about two things; K through 12 education, but the main one ... the one you raise is basic research. As I said, Vannevar Bush said that was a seed corn the government should help fund it and work with corporations and universities. The relationship between corporations of the government is pretty bad these days, those of that government funds research. This was Eisenhower's favorite thing, space programs, and internet or the ARPANET is what it's called when he does it. The transistor, the microchip, they all come about because Eisenhower loves what he calls my scientists. James Killian is appointed to be the person who helped you research there. This is a golden age of basic research in America, the Eisenhower years. Then, of course, Kennedy continued.

Amy Gutmann: It's great for the morale of the country too. It's a uniter.

Walter Isaacson: It's also something that we're a very individualist country. We should be. We should be market-driven individuals, but basic research is something we have to do collectively as a society, sometimes. Now, you also had corporations that used to do great basic research. Bell Labs has set up. They just want to look at the solid state materials, semiconductors. Maybe, it will help them amplify a phone signal, but they aren't trying to build. They come up with the transistor, the laser, and everything else. Xerox, the Xerox PARC. Those days are gone as well. I just cringed about six years ago when the federal government not only was cutting NIH but then going into the sequester. I was up at Harvard, but I was here too as well. You get told by people like in the Broad Institute at MIT that we were going to do genetic engineering and sequencing of viruses, but it takes a five-year program. You have to hire a graduate student for five years. When the sequester was about to hit, we not kill them all off. Now, what happens when Ebola arrived?

Amy Gutmann: Ebola, I want you to say what, but our Dean of Medicine, Larry Jameson, who's here just told me we had researchers at the cutting edge of Ebola who have not gotten funding, who are really poised to make breakthroughs of how you can.

Walter Isaacson: Well, we use that from Penn because I thought ... I heard it from Eric Lander at Broad. Of course, Frances Collins who runs NIH said, "Look. I'm not sure we would have had a vaccine by yesterday or tomorrow."

Amy Gutmann: It got skewered for it.

Walter Isaacson: Well, but, we know that the fundamental truth was there that, if you're not doing the basic research in the genetic engineering of viruses, then you're not going to have a vaccine five, six, seven years later or 50 years later.

Amy Gutmann: What can we do about it? Would it be one thing that this suggests is we should use the example, for example, of Ebola to show people? That helps in the short run though, but…

Walter Isaacson: Well, everything's a teachable moment. I'll get into something I probably shouldn't get into which is the dysfunctional nature of Washington, and the fact, I mean Andrea's here, I'll make her get up and do it for me, but Washington is so dysfunctional because it's become polarized. It used to be when, did I say during the Eisenhower years, the parties were not politically ideologically as polarized.

An Eisenhower could work with a Senate Majority Leader, Lyndon Johnson, and get various things funded, whatever it may be. They'll, even basic research funding is subject to this ideological screaming match we have, so it's been cut by about 70%, I think, basic research funding. That was before the sequester. Well, the Republicans are not against basic research. Paul Ryan is great on this issue. Newt Gingrich was great on this issue. It should not be a partisan thing, but people like you and John Hennessy and Drew Faust, and others, when you go to Washington as you often do, have to make sure that you try to transcend this partisan divide by having the great people like Paul Ryan and others on the Republican side and the people on the Democratic side who really care about the patriotic nature of keeping us the most vibrant innovative society in the world. Let's take it out of the partisanship in which its been mired.

Amy Gutmann: Right. We have to be models of doing it well ourselves. I love what you said about bringing the humanities, social sciences, and sciences together. That's part of our strategic plan and our dean of the school of arts and sciences. Steve Fluharty's here and his whole faculty is behind that, but I will also go out on a limb here. The House Science Committee is doing an investing a select investigation of NSF proposals by their titles.

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. That's always from into the …

Amy Gutmann: Well, picking out titles that have climate change in them or a foreign country's name in them. It makes no sense except to politicize basic researchers.

Walter Isaacson: This is why we need ...

Amy Gutmann: We have to speak out against that.

Walter Isaacson: …people of both parties to stand up for research. There are people of both parties. One last shout out to Andrea, it's partly my old profession and of journalism too. Well, we too often play gotcha. If you're on shout show or whatever, you want that, oh, they funded a bumblebee sex research study. I guess the final thing I'd say is an informed citizenry about science love science more, love the connection of the humanities in science more, and understands rather than is intimidated by the need for us to keep advancing in basic research. Sometimes, when people get all worked up about it, I said, "Well, that's why I wrote this book." It helps to know why a transistor is just basically an on/off switch, how an on/off switch in a circuit can do logic, how it's a semiconductor, how it fits into your phone, know technology and know that the invention of the transistor opened up an entire new economy. People who are comfortable with science will celebrate it rather than do that silly denigration thing you talked about.

Amy Gutmann: Right. Terrific. Well, I'm going to open it up to you all. Is there a roving mic here?

Walter Isaacson: There's a roving mic.

Amy Gutmann: Two roving mics. I see a hand. Get a microphone before you start speaking. Introduce yourself and ask Walter Isaacson a question.

Bill Burner: Hi. I'm Bill Burner. I do demonstrations for the physics department. I suppose I have to be careful about not insulting my boss. But my question is actually for Dr. Guttman. It's refreshing to hear you say that we know we botched it on ENIAC, but it seems to me we're still botching it a bit in that we've removed the whole ENIAC display and replaced it with a Dell lab. I'm wondering if there's some way we could get that back. It's motivational as well as kind of reporting our history. I do a lot of outreach. It's very sad to tell people we don't have much for them to see when they come.

Amy Gutmann: Could I refer that question to our dean of engineering since I have to say that's news to me.

Dean of engineering: It's actually not quite so. Of course, we cherish all the pieces of ENIAC that we have. They are very well kept. This is true that we are being surrounded by teaching labs, but it's very inspirational to the students to have ENIAC and display as they're starting computer science. I think it's a win-win situation. We preserve history. We inspire the future.

Walter Isaacson: Do that again. Maybe, Bill Mauchly ... Bill, let him because there was a lot of Mauchly family things…

Amy Gutmann: Give Bill the mic.

Bill Mauchly: Yes. I'm Bill Mauchly.

Amy Gutmann: Welcome to you and your family. It's great to have you here.

Bill Mauchly: Thank you very much. We're very proud to be here. I wasn't going to bring it up, but since you started. The ENIAC is probably the most important artifact of the Information Age. I think it should be collected, reassembled and brought back to Philadelphia in its entirety and its 30-ton glory and put on display for the public, not hold up in a classroom or wherever you have it. Do you think there's any point in Penn being a part of that display or museum or whatever that is or do you think it should be ... maybe should be something more commercial like Franklin Institute?

Amy Gutmann: Well, the Franklin Institute is also a non-profit institution. We would partner in the efforts to do that. Obviously, it would take an effort to get it all together, but I think that, certainly, we'd be happy to be part of it.

Walter Isaacson: I'll be part of it.

Amy Gutmann: Yup. Right. There we go.

Walter Isaacson: It's somewhat complicated because ...

Amy Gutmann: You know the complication.

Walter Isaacson: Well, ENIAC, the biggest part of it is now owned by the Smithsonian. The Smithsonian lent it to the Computer History Museum in California. I actually was interviewed in front of it for CBS show and the Smithsonian almost tried to deny rights of CBS to even show it. It all gets complicated. However, it could easily be rebuilt. It's so important to have history there to inspire and get a half more second on one quick thing at Harvard.

Amy Gutmann: But let me just say that just if we're really talking about the practicality of this, the present president of Cornell University will be the new president of the Smithsonian.

Walter Isaacson: We'll get Skorton to do it.

Amy Gutmann: We'll get Skorton to do and help…

Walter Isaacson: By the way, we should make sure all your family papers are preserved too because they're very important including the website in which you keep some of the diaries of your great mother and father. At Harvard, they have the Mark I which is their version right in the big lobby of the Science Center, but two years ago, I gave a lecture about it. There were 17 panels in front of it and not one of them had a woman even though Grace Hopper was the main programmer.

Amy Gutmann: We have to change that too.

Walter Isaacson: Sherry Murray and Drew Faust. I have to go back for the rededication because they put a whole new display up, but that's good.

Amy Gutmann: That is good. That is good. Here we go.

Jeff Weinstein: Hi. I'm Jeff Weinstein. I work for the city controller. This is a fabulous event.

Amy Gutmann: Hi, Jeff.

Jeff Weinstein: Thank you very much for putting this all together. I have also a question for you, President Gutmann. Where does commercialization fit within the structure of incentives for faculty here at Penn? In other words, how does Penn value commercialization versus publication with respect to tenure?

Amy Gutmann: It's a two-part question; one more general, one more specific. We have, I think, a history as many universities of undervaluing commercialization. We, several years ago, very dramatically changed our intellectual property patent policy to be state of the art so as to more incentivize our faculty and support and encourage them. We have ramped up the financial support of what we call translational research at the same time as supporting basic research. We are doing this groundbreaking at Pennovation. We bought this from DuPont Marshall Labs. We are investing in it. All of this is the contexts and discoveries and translation don't occur in a vacuum. There's the context in which we are supporting the great faculty who want to do it at the same time as we support basic research. The environment for us is great because the city of Philadelphia is extraordinarily supportive. The environment for research funding is less than great as Walter pointed out. We use the bully pulpit as much as we can to hope to bring sense to the government.

The second part is more specific about tenure of the deans I introduced have brought into their schools a recognition that that kind of creativity is valuable in addition to the financial incentives and most important, it's something that Walter and I both discovered in different ways which is also for tenure, we have to value collaborative work when we see and we can find out what the contribution of a faculty member is to that work. We no longer as in the past just value these single-authored papers. We don't basically discourage faculty from doing the collaborative work that's necessary.

It's important that that collaborative work be original because that's what we reward. We are really now doing things right which we didn't as recently as a few years ago.

Gentlemen here. I can't see hands back there. If there are hands back there, please pick the next from…Okay.

Male in audience: There was brief mention of Alan Turing.

Amy Gutmann: Yes. Great science.

Male: I would like to hear a 30-second thumbnail of what happened to Alan Turing and why.

Walter Isaacson: Alan Turing, as I said, was a young mathematician at Cambridge when he discovers Ada Lovelace's notion, among other things, of a general-purpose machine. He's got to wrestle with one of the great math problems of the time which comes from Hilbert and Godel which is tied to the incompleteness theory which is can you figure out which mathematical statements are provable and which ones aren't.

He comes up with the notion in his head of the universal computing machine that can do any computable number. By doing that, he shows that there's just no way. There's an indeterminacy at the heart of mathematics. Well, that's kind of cool to figure out, but what was even cooler was the universal computing machine because that becomes a foundation for what the computer is. He goes to Bletchley Park in England to help implement that with Tommy Flowers and others to break the German code which is what the movie is about. He's also gay and not secretive about it, but it's not particularly cool in England in the 1940s when you're in military intelligence to be too open about being gay. After the war, he does what I called the imitation game, the Turing test, that I mentioned where he looks at artificial intelligence because he's come to believe that humans are just like machines. You can program them that their instincts, their drives, maybe their sexual urges are all programmed in. I don't want to get too psychological on it, but this is what he's doing.

He gets into a debate about where, on BBC, where the person debating him, great brain surgeon, Sir Geoffrey Johnson, says, "Yes, but no machine will ever want to touch a woman's leg or blush or whatever." He becomes quiet because of his own thing and because that very week, he was engaging in activity that was so human, a machine would have found it incomprehensible. He was celebrating the publication of a paper. He decided to pick up a young male drifter who moves into his house with him and ends up ... There's a burglary. He reports it to the police, and he admits that he had a sexual relationship with this young male drifter. He is sentenced, as if he's a machine, down to go for hormone treatment to fix. He does it for a while, but then a couple years, he takes an apple, dips it into cyanide, bites into it, and commits suicide. It's a tragic and heroic tale but also when you ponder that suicide, you say, "Is that something a machine would have done?"

Walter Isaacson: Yeah. Very moving story. It's worth pondering. That's why the innovators is not only a great book about the history of innovation but also I think a deep book, a good book for the humanities.

Walter Isaacson: There's the Alan Turing if you want to know what he looks like.

Amy Gutmann: Final question back there.

Sean Fenn: Hi. My name is Sean Fenn. I work in computer science.

Amy Gutmann: Great.

Sean Fenn: A lot of research or innovation comes from research that may not necessarily be popular. I was wondering if Walton had an opinion on your most recent statement that further research into artificial intelligence could be potentially dangerous.

Walter Isaacson: I think he's wrong, but I think he's smarter than me. He may be right. I interviewed him on that topic.

Amy Gutmann: He's a Penn graduate.

Walter Isaacson: He's a Penn graduate. I interviewed him two weeks ago. It's an event we did in San Francisco on this topic. This is the biggest question. This is our last one. I'm going to end with the big question which is asked. It's a question that Ada and the father, Lord Byron, asked. You're going to have to ask here. Why this is good that the Pennovation Center is connected to a liberal arts institution like Penn? It's throughout human history. We have as a species almost all of the time but able to keep up with our technological advances with our moral and humane sensibilities.

We've been able to deal with them and understand them and feel comfortable with them even if Lord Byron wants them to smash the looms. In the end, we know how to deal with the Industrial Revolution, the employment, et cetera. There have been times when we didn't get it right, dropping of the atom bomb before we have thought it through. Bad mistake, but usually, our moral sensibilities and our humane letters help us keep up with our technology.

That doesn't mean that will always be the case. We may invent machines that do really bad things. You can watch either Star Wars or Star Trek. Hal is really bad. The computer and Star Trek is really good. But what I will tell you is that everything that's going to be done in this building behind me and everything that's going to be done with artificial intelligence, it ain't up to the technology. It's up to us. We control the technology.

To the extent that Elon Musk is fearful, he ain't fearful of technology. He's fearful of human beings. That's what you got to keep your eye on in the computer science department and everywhere else.

Amy Gutmann: Yes. That's part of what the president has asked me to do in the Bioethics Commission. It's important for all the scientists, engineers, biomedical researchers, humanists and social sciences to work together collaboratively. The ethics is injected in the very practice. You can't practice medicine in a way that anybody would recognize as good without having certain principles like do no harm. Look at the volunteers. Let's go back to the Ebola crisis. Look at the volunteers. No computer is going to tell you whether to quarantine people or not. That's got to be something of our judgment. I think the message you're sending is just so important.

Walter Isaacson: Connect the humanities to the sciences.

Amy Gutmann: Connect the humanities to the sciences and the social sciences to understand the politics we're dealing with. Artificial intelligence itself is not a threat if we know how best to use it. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Walter Isaacson: Thanks.

Pennovation Center Groundbreaking

Amy Gutmann: I have a few announcements and some more little things we want to treat you with, but first, I want to ask you to join me in a special thank you to our faculty presenters earlier today; Katherine Kuchenbecker, Charlie Johnson, Karl Ulrich and John Trojanowski. Let's give them a big hand. Also, keep your ears open because in the coming months, we will be announcing us new student-focused innovation prize. This will give our graduating Penn seniors an opportunity to integrate knowledge across academic disciplines and apply the resulting understanding and discovery to pressing social needs. We have right now a new presidential engagement prize for our graduating seniors who are going to do excellent civic service. We want in the year ahead to create an analogous prize for graduating seniors who are going to put innovations into the marketplace.

At this time, I want to ask Penn's chairman of the board, David Cohen, to join me on stage. Please, welcome David Cohen. Walter, come on up here. We're now going to give you a… I'll hold the innovators and… Here we go. We know about this, but this and everybody here in the audience ... Oops. (dropped book) Excuse me. That's okay. What I want to ask all of you to do is to take away with your own expertise some of the lessons of this forum in order to make not only the University of Pennsylvania ever greater in its ability to bring innovations for the sake of impact but also to make our great city of Philadelphia and this country as great as it can possibly be in the spirit of the innovator. Will you all do that with us? Great.

Now, we have a video and do I have to do something to get it started? No? All I have to say is roll it.

(Video launches…)

Male Voiceover: How does an idea grow? America's first University, we live by our founder's advice, that an investment in knowledge pays the best interest. We're in the business of growing and nurturing the ideas that change the world. More than 50 years ago, Penn engineers constructed the ENIAC and jump-started the computer age.

Amy Gutmann: Innovation and engagement are part of Penn's DNA. Our students and faculty thrive in an atmosphere that provides access to diverse ideas and encourages service to a larger cause not on our own but by engaging the world collaboratively through our research and discoveries. We transform our world for the better, one breakthrough and one innovation at a time.

Male Voiceover: Today, Penn veterinarians, oncologists, physicists, and engineers are working to detect cancer faster than ever before through nanotech devices that work like electronic noses. Researchers are growing vegetables that can help deliver vaccines safely and efficiently to the most remote parts of the world. A biologist-turned-physicist and a material scientist are collaborating to solve alternative energy challenges. By unlocking the evolutionary secrets of giant clams, they convert sunlight to biofuel. Nanotechnologists are developing an invisible spray that keeps water from adhering to any surface revolutionizing everything from electronics to Architecture. Penn's research powers innovation and breakthroughs on an unprecedented scale with one of the largest research portfolios in the world.

Dawn Bonnell, Ph.D. (Vice Provost for Research: Our multidisciplinary research accomplishments drive our success. At Penn, we go beyond the cutting edge of research. We take fundamental discoveries and put them up against the problems facing the world today and tomorrow. We give our innovators the tools and help them find the capital and the connections they need to turn data into action creating new technologies that literally change lives.

Male Voiceover: Once completed, the reinvigorated industrial space at the South Bank will serve as a nucleus of innovation at Penn fostering progress and development in the Philadelphia area. It will continue Penn's legacy of supporting students to develop cutting-edge businesses that include a social conscience as part of their business plan. Penn is also a place where student computer programmers meet hardware hackers to create something that's a lot more than the sum of its parts.

Amy Gutmann: We're more than an incubator. We're an innovation ecosystem. We grow ideas. We create brainstorms and controlled conditions. We celebrate the art of science. Interdisciplinary collaboration is real here. We succeed not in isolation but by joining our intellectual forces together. We're a community of thinkers joining with a community of doers to serve a larger cause than our own. As Benjamin Franklin said, make new knowledge practical. That's exactly what we're doing.

Male Voiceover: Penn is ushering in a new age where the impossible becomes the doable, and the improbable becomes the everyday. Quadrotors fly in perfect unison, opening up a surprising world of possibilities engaging for the good of all on a global and a local scale. Nobody knows the impact of that better than Emily, the young leukemia patient in complete remission after Penn researchers altered her own immune cells to save her life. Emily's doctors are part of the Penn team that engages knowledge in a cause larger than ourselves. You never know which ideas will change the world, but if the past is any predictor, it's a safe bet those ideas are taking root right here right now at the University of Pennsylvania. (End of video-applause)

Music playing, fireworks, and fly drones.

Amy Gutmann: A great job. Really great job.

David Cohen: Congratulations.

Amy Gutmann: I want it with my geek machine. Great.

David Cohen: Just another couple of minutes, please. I just have a series of thanks. It's a short series of thanks but important. I want to start by thanking everyone who put this event together. This is absolutely amazing. Second, I wanted to join Amy in thanking our Penn faculty who kicked this all off. It's just another demonstration of the tremendous capacity we have at Penn, the brilliance of our faculty. We just couldn't be prouder of all of you. It was a great opportunity for us to show you off today.

Third, I want to thank the folks at KML. There's lots of connections here, but KML is a company three years young and of course founded right here at Penn, Penn engineering grads. In case you don't know, their headquarters is right here on the south bank. I think Amy and I have special thanks for them not making us look like complete idiots. You should have thanks too because we didn't hurt any of you.

As little robots, I don't exactly know what they could have done, completely out of control. I'm in another connection, I want to thank the KML team because we actually had KML come down to our senior leadership conference in Orlando at Comcast as we work on innovation in technology. We use KML as one of the examples of the innovation and experimentation and technology that was happening in Philadelphia as it's happening with Comcast. This is actually my third exposure to KML robotics. It gets better every time. Thanks very much, guys.

I also want to thank my good friend, Walter Isaacson. Walter, as we know, it means it's a great president, CEO of the Aspen Institute. One of the things I think that Walter doesn't get credit for that is so important, because he's working in an environment, and we all experience this environment where there are so few opportunities for rational discourse, not to say people who agree with each other but when they're disagreeing, they can disagree agreeably. That's what the Aspen Institute is all about. There are very few places in this country where we can go and you can actually hear differences of opinion discuss civilly appropriately, and you can leave actually having learned something.

It sounds so simple, but it wouldn't happen without Walter's leadership. Walter, I don't want to embarrass you, but when people refer to you as an author who writes about geniuses, pretty soon, we're going to have to be referring to you as the genius who writes this incredibly compelling, clear and imaginative nonfiction. I'm such a fan of the work that you do. I love everything that you do. I'm going to tell one little secret about Walter Isaacson which is Walter spent about, this is about your sixth or seventh trip to Philadelphia in the last two months. Pretty soon, we're going to have to make him an honorary citizen of the city.

Although he loves Aspen and he loves the work he does at Aspen and he loves his writing and he's now commented that he loves Penn, what he really loves about Philadelphia is that he agreed we are the best restaurant city in America. Anytime you want to come back, Walter, we'll appreciate it.

I also want to thank Amy. Every time I see Amy in one of these settings, frequently when this happens, and I moderate panels too, people properly observe whether that was a nice job, but don't quit your day job. When I watch Amy do this, I realized, uh-oh, we better make sure Amy doesn't quit her day job because she is really spectacular at this. It is not easy to get a free-flowing amazing conversation like we just saw with Walter Isaacson. Walter, I'm sure you will agree that's as comfortable an hour as you've ever spent being interviewed. Amy, we just appreciate what you do and the way in which you made this day so special.

Amy Gutmann: Thank you.

David Cohen: Last and I think most important because this was a celebration of innovation, it was a fabulous Silfen University forum, but in the end, it is the kickoff of the Pennovation Center. It's why we're all here. On behalf of Amy and me and all of the trustees, I want to thank all of you for coming here making this a memorable afternoon and a memorable kickoff for Penn's Pennovation Center. Thanks very much. Everyone's invited to join us for a reception in the tent to our right. I don’t know if there's more than one entrance, but certainly, right here, you can go through. We'll see you there. Thanks.