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Godlike Machines

A remarkable discovery has emerged in astrophysics: key properties of the universe have just the right values to make life possible. Most scientists prefer to explain away this uniqueness, insisting that a number of unseen universes must therefore exist, each randomly different. Astrophysicist Bernard Haisch joined George Knapp in the first half of the show to propose the alternative—that the special properties of our universe reflect an underlying intelligent consciousness.

In the second half of the program, veteran journalist Chris Taylor talked about how the Star Wars franchise has conquered our culture with a sense of lightness and exuberance, while remaining serious enough to influence politics, and spread a spirituality that appeals to religious groups and atheists alike.

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Godlike Machines

Show Archive
Date: Wednesday - April 6, 2005
Host: George Noory
Guests: Hugo de Garis, Steven Gregory

Artificial brain designer and theoretical physicist Prof. Hugo de Garis raised the issue of whether humanity should build godlike intelligent machines. Because of technological advances, he foresees a time in this century when artificial intelligence can be developed at the atomic level, and an object the size of an apple could surpass human brain capacity to the trillionth power.

At this point, he believes humanity will break into two groups. The Cosmists, who want to build these massively intelligent machines, and the Terrans who are against it. A third, smaller faction, he labeled as the Cyborgists, who want to merge with the artificial intelligence. Prof. de Garis believes the conflict between the Cosmists and the Terrans will be so extreme that wars could be fought over the issue.

The machines he called "artilects," may become so massively intelligent, said de Garis, that they would regard humanity, in the same way we look at insects, and they could be so powerful as to create their own universes. He boiled it down to the question: Do we build gods or do we build our potential exterminators? In an on-the-spot Fast Blast poll that was conducted, 56% sided with the Terrans, and 44% with the Cosmists.

Minuteman Project

First half-hour guest, Steven Gregory, an investigator for KFYI, discussed the Minuteman Project, where he is currently embedded along the U.S./Mexico border in Arizona. This effort to stem illegal immigration into the U.S. is being manned by volunteers who report any suspicious activity they witness by calling 911 or the Border Patrol, he said. Gregory commented that he did not view the group as a militia (though a small segment were carrying guns) but rather as average Americans who were concerned that not enough was being done about this issue.

Bumper Music

Bumper music from Wednesday April 06, 2005

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