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Technology & Human Evolution

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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Technology & Human Evolution

Show Archive
Date: Tuesday - September 13, 2005
Host: George Noory
Guests: Joel Garreau, Angel Rivero

Reporter and editor at the Washington Post, Joel Garreau talked about how we are engineering the next stage for human evolution through genetics, robotics, and nanotechnologies. There is an increasing emphasis on interfacing the mind with machines, he noted, citing recent experiments with a "telekinetic" monkey at Bell Labs as an example. The primate, whose brain was wired to a machine, was taught to control aspects of a video game by using just the thoughts in her head.

The military's DARPA is particularly interested in these mind-machine convergences said Garreau, and they've been experimenting with increasing the endurance and capacities of soldiers. For instance, it may be possible for a soldier to remain active for up to a week without sleep. Also on the horizon are "memory pills" to be aimed initially at "Baby Boomers banishing their senior moments," said Garreau. The drug companies already have these pharmaceutical products in Stage 2 Clinical Trials, he added.

This evolving future could become our heaven or our hell, Garreau forecast. On the plus side you have advancements like life extension and the ability to grow new limbs, but on the down side, genetic and other types of experimentation might go awry and in a worst case scenario lead to species extinction. He also talked about societal conflicts that may arise over "enhanced" children, and the disparities between kids who are given technological boosters and those who remain "as is."

Haunted New Orleans

First hour guest, tour guide Angel Rivero discussed hauntings and voodoo in New Orleans (Rivero was recently evacuated from there after the storm). The Superdome is allegedly cursed as it was built over a beautiful cemetery and the goal line for the Saints is where the front gate once was, she said. And at the Morgue Bar & Lounge, which was at one time New Orleans' first integrated mortuary, there have been numerous reports of a little girl, believed to have died of yellow fever, haunting the women's restroom.

Bumper Music

Bumper music from Tuesday September 13, 2005

  • One
    Three Dog Night
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