On this episode of ID the Future, author and physician Geoffrey Simmons joins host Andrew McDiarmid in a wide-ranging discussion of his new book, Are We Here to Re-Create Ourselves: The Convergence of Designs. From the foresight needed in the design of eyes, to our stereoscopic and redundant hearing systems, to the mysteries of design in the nervous and circulatory systems, signs of engineered design are everywhere in the human body.
And humans are mimicking some of those designs now through humanoid robots, which we’re making ever more like ourselves — in appearance, that is. Will robots ever experience empathy or other feelings, or develop a genuine sense of humor? Will robots have souls? Simmons offers his opinion on the matter, and sounds a cautionary note: as robots advance and become more powerful, their goodness or badness will depend on its human programmer.