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, Andrew McDiarmid catches up with philosopher Jay Richards at the recent COSM conference in greater Seattle. The two discuss the history of George Gilder’s Telecosm conferences and how the first one gave birth to a book Richards edited and contributed to 18 years ago, Are We Spiritual Machines? Ray Kurzweil vs. the Critics of Strong A.I. Is the “singularity” coming, as Kurzweil argues there and elsewhere, when machines equal and then quickly surpass human intelligence? Does “machine learning” really mean learning? Will “Skynet” wake up? Jay describes Kurzweil’s sunny version of strong AI and the dystopian version. Then he argues the other side, namely that human beings possess something beyond the purely material, something even the most powerful computers will never possess.
On this episode of ID the Future, Andrew McDiarmid continues his conversation with science historian Michael Keas on myths of science and religion, based on Keas’ new work from ISI Books, Unbelievable: 7 Myths About the History and Future of Science and Religion. This time the myth comes not from the past but the future. That is, it’s the supposedly scientific belief that ET is coming, and when it comes, it will look just like a god to us. It will replace earthly religion with an advanced, more ethical alternative, and we’ll finally achieve enlightenment. It’s just as much a myth as any other, yet it’s shaping people’s worldviews anyway. Please consider donating to support the IDTF Podcast.