Disciplines/fields: Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence, Cognitive Science, Psychology

Duration: 4 sessions

Course Content

Introducing Computational Creativity: Its Goals, Methods and Philosophy (session 1)

Computational Models of Divergent Thinking (session 2)

Computational Models of Combinatorial Creativity (session 3)

Artificial Generative Systems (or: How to Train Your Twitterbot) (session 4)


Attendees will learn about the new field of Computational Creativity (CC), and understand its goals and its philosophy. Importantly, the distinction between creative production and mere generation will be made abundantly clear through examples and discussion. Attendees will be given the necessary background and motivation (and pointed to existing resources) to build their own creative systems, and to engage in the debate about the potential of machines to be creative in their own right. Moreover, attendees will learn that CC – though a branch of AI that is informed by CogSci and Psychology – has many parallels with the modernist agenda in art and literature of the 20th Century. More than any other branch of AI or CS, Computational Creativity bridges the divide between engineering and the humanities.


The course presenter has written an introductory book on Computational Creativity that is feely available online. The slides for the course draw freely from this book so it forms a perfect companion for the course.
The book, titled Hand-Made By Machines?, is readable online at: RobotComix.com
In addition, other slides/material are available from this site.
Attendees are also directed to PROSECCO-Network.EU (PROSECCO is a coordination action for the promotion of CC research, lead by the author), and to Afflatus.UCD.ie
The monograph Exploding the Creativity Myth: The Computational Foundations of Linguistic Creativity (Bloomsbury, 2012) by Tony Veale may also prove useful to the enthusiastic student.


Dr. Tony Veale received his Ph.D. in Computer Science, on the subject of Creative Language Processing, in Trinity College, Dublin in 1996. Since then, he has divided his career between academia and industry. In the latter, he has developed text-understanding and machine translation systems for Hitachi (in particular, the translation of English into American Sign language, ASL), as well as analogical reasoning tools for the CYC project in Cycorp at Austin, Texas, and patented web-based question-answering technology for Intelliseek (Cincinnati) and Coreintellect (Dallas), where he held the position of Chief Scientist. During his tenure on the CYC project in Cycorp, he developed a model of analogical reasoning for CYC and contributed to DARPA’s High-Performance-Knowledge-Bases (HPKB) and Rapid-Knowledge-Formation (RKF) projects.

Veale is the author / co-author of over 120 research papers, and is author of the 2012 monograph Exploding the Creativity Myth: The Computational Foundations of Linguistic Creativity from Bloomsbury Academic. He is also the principal co-editor of a multidisciplinary volume from Mouton, “Creativity and the Agile Mind”, which arose from his fellowship at the Flemish Academy of Arts and Science (VLAC) in Brussels in 2008. He is a co-author of the forthcoming monograph from Morgan Claypool on metaphor processing. He publishes widely in Computational Creativity, and the outputs of his research group can be found on their web-site, (http://Afflatus.UCD.ie). He has delivered multiple courses on creativity (both linguistic and computational) at ESSLLI (the European Summer Schools on Logic, Language and Information) and at the recent Autumn School in Computational Creativity in Helsinki (Nov. 2011). His research on linguistic creativity has been covered in New Scientist magazine and in various newspaper articles and radio science shows. Veale has co-edited two special journal issues on computational creativity, has co-organized the IJWCC (the precursor workshop series to ICCC, the International Conference on Computational Creativity) multiple times, was local organizer of the ICCC 2012 event at UCD in Dublin and was general chair of ICCC 2013. Veale is the scientific coordinator of the EU coordination action on computational creativity, entitled PROSECCO (Promoting the Scientific Exploration of Computational Creativity), whose aim is the development of computational creativity as a mature academic discipline.

For 2011-2013 Veale was an invited professor of Linguistic Web Science at KAIST, the Korean institute of Advanced Science and Technology. Veale continues to promote Computational Creativity internationally, such as at a recent tutorial on metaphor generation at EACL-2014, and a tutorial on Twitterbot-construction at ICCC-2014. Veale taught a course on computational creativity with an emphasis on Twitterbots at the University of Helsinki in Autumn 2014 and co-organized the 2015 PROSECCO code-camp on Twitterbots. He is the author of the web initiative RobotComix.com, which provides hundreds of pages of engaging content on computers and creativity for students. He is also creator of the Twitterbot @MetaphorMagnet, which generates a novel and pithy metaphor for public consumption every hour on the hour.