On this episode of ID the Future, Robert Crowther interviews Eric Holloway, Associate Fellow at the Walter Bradley Center for Natural and Artificial Intelligence, about Holloway’s recent article answering a common criticism of intelligent design theory. The criticism centers on William Dembski’s explanatory filter for detecting design, especially Dembski’s crucial innovation, which was to include specification as the filter’s final step. Critics say specification is an ad hoc addition, conjured up by ID theorists for no good reason except to prop up ID theory. No one else uses it, they say. They’re wrong, says Holloway. Dembski accurately formalized a filter we use so often that we’re like fish in the sea. We are unaware of it because it’s ubiquitous. To prove his point, Holloway comes armed with powerful examples from information theory, communication theory, and cryptography.
On this episode of ID the Future, host Robert Marks interviews Oxford University mathematician John Lennox on Lennox’s new book 2084: Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Humanity. It’s a wide-ranging discussion about AI’s advantages already being realized, in medicine, for example; AI’s supposed potential to achieve human-like consciousness; ethical issues that AI programmers will have to grapple with; effects that AI will have on the economy and individual workers; and the risks associated with living in an AI world where every movement is tracked. A key question as we move toward this future, says Lennox, is what does it mean to be human?
On this episode of ID the Future, science historian Michael Keas and philosopher Jay Richards continue their conversation about Neil deGrasse Tyson’s new National Geographic series Cosmos: Possible Worlds. As Keas explains, Tyson’s story of ancient superstition evolving at last into modern medicine gets both ancient and modern medicine factually wrong. His long-running “history” of the warfare between science and religion also is historically mistaken, Keas, author of Unbelievable: 7 Myths About the History and Future of Science and Religion insists. Curiously, Tyson has a future, quasi-religious myth of his own to promote: personal immortality through futuristic technology.
On this episode of ID the Future, Robert Marks interviews Roger Olsen, co-author of the groundbreaking 1984 book The Mystery of Life’s Origin. In the book’s epilogue they suggested that a designing intelligence stands as the best explanation for the origin of life. And with a revised and greatly expanded new edition of the book now available, he says that 36 years of additional research from the origin-of-life community has left their conclusions stronger than ever. Now an environmental scientist, Olsen has spent his career since then helping homes and families abroad protect children from the ravages of environmental pollution.
On this episode of ID the Future, Robert Marks continues his conversation with Walter Bradley, co-author (with Charles Thaxton and Roger Olsen) of the groundbreaking 1984 work The Mystery of Life’s Origin. A revised and expanded edition of the book has just been released with new contributions from James Tour, Guillermo Gonzalez, Stephen Meyer, and others, but today Bradley and Marks discuss the book’s first release, including the cultural context that made finding a non-religious publisher an uphill battle, and discussion of some of the endorsements and early reviews, including one drive-by and four positive responses from distinguished scientists Robert Jastrow, Dean Kenyon, Robert Shapiro, and Fritz Schaefer. Bradley and Marks also discuss some scholars who more recently have testified to how the book, and Bradley, dramatically influenced their intellectual careers.
On this episode of ID the Future, Andrew McDiarmid reads an excerpt from a speech prepared by philosopher, mathematician, and trailblazing design theorist William Dembski for the launch of the Walter Bradley Center for Natural and Artificial Intelligence. Dr. Dembski asks whether we need worry about an AI takeover, and says no, there’s no evidence that artificial intelligence (AI) could reach that level, or achieve consciousness, and there’s mounting evidence from both philosophy and the field of artificial intelligence technology that it cannot and will not. “The real worry,” Dembski says, “isn’t that we’ll raise machines to our level, but that we’ll lower humanity to the level of machines.”