Tagged with “humanity” (31)

  1. John Searle - Where Does Consciousness Come From?

    About John Searle’s TED Talk

    Philosopher John Searle argues that consciousness is what makes us human. He makes the case for studying consciousness and accepting it as a biological phenomenon.

    http://www.npr.org/2016/07/15/485711630/where-does-consciousness-come-from?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=tedradiohour

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  2. Caravans in Space

    Is the Earth too perfect? The Moon too grey? Mars too dusty? Then how about setting up a human colony in the depths of space?

    Richard Hollingham travels to the Tennessee Valley Interstellar Workshop in Chattanooga, Tennessee to meet scientists, engineers, doctors and anthropologists planning human colonies in space and spaceships that will take humanity to the stars.

    These are not dreamers - although they all have an ambitious dream - but well qualified experts. Several work at Nasa, others have day jobs at universities and research institutes.

    Richard hears of proposals to build giant space stations and worldships - vessels packed with the best of humanity. These caravans in space might be lifeboats to escape an approaching asteroid or perhaps the first step to colonising the galaxy.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07lhgqx

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  3. Planet Money, Episode 625: The Last Job

    There are some very smart people out there arguing that machines and computers are stealing our jobs. And that when these jobs go away, they won’t be replaced. They think that in the future, there will be fewer and fewer jobs.

    In the short-term, that’s a big problem, but in the long-term, it could be great news. If robots are doing all the work, people can just relax, right?

    What happens when the jobs go away? No one knows. So, in collaboration with The Truth, we made something up. Our show today is a work of fiction.

    http://www.npr.org/sections/money/2015/05/20/408292388/episode-625-the-last-job

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  4. Inquiring Minds 82: Alex Garland - The Science of Ex Machina

    Alex Garland is the writer and director of Ex Machina, a recently released film about what happens when someone is asked to interact with what might be the world’s first true artificial intelligence (as well as the writer of Dredd, Sunshine, and 28 Days Later).

    On the show this week guest host Rebecca Watson talks to Garland about the science behind the film, and what he learned in the process of making it.

    https://soundcloud.com/inquiringminds/82-alex-garland-the-science-of-ex-machina

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  5. 99% Invisible - 114: Ten Thousand Years

    http://99percentinvisible.org/episode/ten-thousand-years/

    In 1990, the federal government invited a group of geologists, linguists, astrophysicists, architects, artists, and writers to the New Mexico desert, to visit the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant. They would be there on assignment.

    The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) is the nation’s only permanent underground repository for nuclear waste. Radioactive byproducts from nuclear weapons manufacturing and nuclear power plants. WIPP was designed not only to handle a waste stream of various forms of nuclear sludge, but also more mundane things that interacted with radioactive materials, such as tools and gloves.

    WIPP, which is located deep in the New Mexico desert, was designed to store all of this radioactive material and keep us all safe from it.

    Eventually, WIPP will be sealed up and left alone. Years will pass and those years will become decades. Those decades will become centuries and those centuries will roll into millennia. People above ground will come and go. Cultures will rise and fall. And all the while, below the surface, that cave full of waste will get smaller and smaller, until the salt swallows up all those oil drums and entombs them. Then, all the old radioactive gloves and tools and little bits from bombs –all still radioactive– will be solidified in the earth’s crust for more than 200,000 years. Basically forever.

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  6. What Do We Make of The Big Bang?

    http://radioopensource.org/what-do-we-make-of-the-big-bang/

    In the beginning was the Bang. We’ve got visible proof of it now, thanks to blockbuster discoveries made at Harvard and predicted at MIT. But are our heads too cluttered with creation myths, and the matters of the day, to come to grips with the beginning of everything? We’re clearing our heads to listen to the wisdom of the physicists, in their words and images, to get to the bottom of some pretty basic questions.

    • Prof. Alan Guth, the theoretical physicist at MIT who predicted cosmic inflation more than thirty years ago; • Prof. Max Tegmark, at MIT, the specialist on the cosmic microwave background; • Prof. Robert Kirshner, the observer-physicist at Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and Clowes Professor of Science.

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  7. BBC Forum: Hands

    Some say that the hand is where the mind meets the world. So what happens if you lose a hand? What are the options for a replacement? And the power of the human hand to create music out of chaos: how does a conductor communicate his musical vision to an orchestra. Bridget Kendall’s guests are: prof. Simon Kay, a surgeon based in Leeds, who performed the first hand transplant in the UK; New Zealander Lynette Jones, Senior Research Scientist at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who studies tactile sensations; and Sakari Oramo, a Finnish musician who recently became the Chief Conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra.

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  8. Long Now Foundation - Steven Pinker: The Decline of Violence

    First, he presents exhaustive evidence that the tragic view of history is wrong and always has been. A close examination of the data shows that in every millennium, century, and decade, humans have been drastically reducing violence, cruelty, and injustice—-right down to the present year. A trend that consistent is not luck; it has to be structural.

    So, second, he boldly founds a discipline that might as well be called “psychohistory.” As a Harvard psychologist and public intellectual (author of The Language Instinct and The Blank Slate), he sought causes for the phenomenon he’s reporting—-why violence has declined. Real ethical progress, he found, came from a sequence of institutions, norms, cultural practices, and mental tricks employed by whole societies to change their collective mind and behavior in a peaceful direction.

    Humanity’s great project of civilizing itself is far from complete, but Pinker’s survey of how far we’ve come builds confidence that the task will be completed, and he illuminates how to get there.

    http://longnow.org/seminars/02012/oct/08/decline-violence/

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  9. Nadine Gordimer reads ‘The Centaur’ by José Saramago

    It is in many ways a unique story. Here is a creature imagined, something that is higher and better and different from a man. Here is the dream of a creature that is half horse, half man, who has the physical fitness of a horse and the mental complexity of a man. This extraordinary fable shows the depths of the human confusion that the creature faces. It is a wonderful way of looking into the conflict between what one’s body desires or dictates – sexual desire as part of our power; it’s through sexual desire that you take possession, after all – and many of one’s other ideals about how we ought to approach another being. There’s as much in this little story as in 20 novels and 20 poems.

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

  10. The Quest for Immortality — FastForward Radio

    Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon discuss the quest for immortality, which has been with humanity for a long time — perhaps since the very beginning, and which has done much to shape the world in which we live. New organizations are emerging with a whole new take on the proposition that life can be extended indefinitely.

    How do we get from here to there? The phases might look something like this:

    Life Extension

    Durable Digital Replacements

    Substrate Mobility

    Immortality

    So, will some of us live forever? And what does that even mean?

    —Huffduffed by Clampants

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