“Sir” Calum of Chace—I believe we knighted him—joins us for an excellently English and energetic exchange. Excelsior! (Get at me, Stan Lee.)
Calum Chace is a bestselling author of fiction and nonfiction. His newest book is The Economic Singularity: Artificial Intelligence and the Death of Capitalism. We had a great time chatting with Calum, and we know you’ll enjoy hearing his acerbic assaults of Anglo acumen and awesomeness. (Can’t. Stop. Won’t. Stop.) On with the show (notes)!
- The tenor, and the popularity, of the AI discussion changed significantly when the three wise men—Hawking, Musk and Gates—all expressed fear of an AI future.
- Though Calum gives due credit to science fiction, he counts himself amongst us who were drawn inexorably into the singularity by none other than Brother Ray. Are We Spiritual Machines? will do that to a person.
- Google’s Larry Page and Sergey Brin are quite the optimists about AI, the future, et al. Are they wrong to be? No, really, I’m asking you.
- Watch these robots compete in DARPA’s Fukushima-inspired (just like my life, dawg) Robotics Challenge.
- The East African basic income pilot I mentioned is an effort of GiveDirectly, not GiveWell. I misspoke because I am dumb and bad, obvs. GiveWell is a fine organization in its own right though. They research and review charities so that you don’t have to. Oh, and guess what one of their favorite charities is. Yup, you guessed it: Franke Stallone—er, I mean, GiveDirectly.
- Yuval Harari envisions a future in which some of us become gods, some of us useless. An intriguing notion to be sure, and certainly one worthy of further exploration. In the meantime, Calum and Zach are both enthusiastic fans of Harari’s book Sapiens, while Tom and I heartily recommend this Edge conversation between Harari and Daniel Kahneman.
- Calum made a promising bet with Robin Hanson. We approve.
- Denver, Colorado. (Great, Tom. How am I supposed to hyperlink that?)