Musa al-Gharbi on the Value of Intellectual Diversity

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 19 October 2020 | 1h 16m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Musa al-Gharbi about the value in intellectual diversity, both by keeping ourselves honest and in allowing ideas from unexpected quarters. Discusses why there are a lot more liberals than conservatives on university faculties, the extent to which that’s a problem, Heterodox Academy, and how we should better think about the value of diverse viewpoints.

Sean B. Carroll on Randomness and the Course of Evolution

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 5 October 2020 | 1h 20m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Sean B. Carroll about the importance of randomness and unpredictability in life, from the evolution of species to the daily routine of every individual. Includes an overview of the evolution of the thinking about evolution, especially the modern evo-devo revolution. Draws from his book, A Series of Fortunate Events: Chance and the Making of the Planet, Life, and You.

Jason Torchinsky on Our Self-Driving Future

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 10 August 2020 | 1h 18m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Jason Torchinsky about his book Robot, Take the Wheel: The Road to Autonomous Cars and the Lost Art of Driving. Backgrounds the progress and challenges still to be solved developing autonomous vehicles. Discusses the potential unanticipated consequences when autonomous vehicles become commonplace and examines how our relationship with cars is likely to change in the near future.

Carl Bergstrom on Information, Disinformation, and Bullshit

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 3 August 2020 | 1h 24m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Carl Bergstrom about his book Calling Bullshit: The Art of Skepticism in a Data-Driven World. Discusses how to see through the ever-increasing bullshit presented in the language of maths, science and statistics.

Maria Konnikova on Poker, Psychology, and Reason

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 22 June 2020 | 1h 20m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Maria Konnikova about her book The Biggest Bluff: How I Learned to Pay Attention, Master Myself, and Win. Backgrounds her path from a PhD in psychology, to writing, to learning about poker for the book, to becoming a successful tournament poker player. Discusses what poker can teach us about rational thinking and human psychology.

John Danaher on Our Coming Automated Utopia

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 18 May 2020 | 1h 22m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with John Danaher about his book Automation and Utopia: Human Flourishing in a World without Work. Makes the case that work will soon be optional and that human creativity and artistic impulse can flourish in a world free of the demands of working for a living. Discusses what that would entail, whether it’s realistic, and what comes next.

David Kaiser on Science, Money, and Power

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 30 March 2020 | 1h 34m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with physicist and historian David Kaiser about the confluence of physics, politics, and funding in the twentieth century. Discusses the fraught relationship between scientists and their funding sources throughout history, from Galileo and his patrons to the current rise of private foundations.

Neil Shubin on Evolution, Genes, and Dramatic Transitions

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 16 March 2020 | 1h 32m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Neil Shubin about his book Some Assembly Required: Decoding Four Billion Years of Life, from Ancient Fossils to DNA. Discusses the discovery of Tiktaalik Roseae, an ancient species of fish that was in the process of learning to walk and breathe on land; how these major transitions happen – typically when evolution finds a way to re-purpose existing organs into new roles – and how we can learn about them by studying living creatures and the information contained in their genomes.