Category Archive: Transformations

Mar
23

Franchises Revisited: Star Wars and the X-Files Are Back

They say you can’t go home again. Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon challenge this idea as they geek out over the huge return of Star Wars to movie theaters and the much more muted return of the X-Files to the small screen. Important questions: Is The Force Awakens more than just a rehash of A New …

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Mar
16

Artificial Intelligence Changes Everything

Phil  and Stephen Gordon discuss rapid progress in artificial intelligence and how AI is fundamentally reshaping our world.  Topics include: AI Researchers Solve Go Go champion Lee Se-dol strikes back to beat Google’s DeepMind AI for first time These engineers are developing artificially intelligent hackers $20,000 self-driving car Scientists made a robot art critic that …

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Mar
14

Lighting up the Universe

Phil and Stephen  discuss people and ideas who are lighting up the universe, both figuratively and literally. First two news stories that are all about light: Matter will be created from light within a year Internet by light promises to leave Wi-Fi eating dust Next, two videos that are guaranteed to brighten up your day …

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Feb
22

Moon Music, Chicken Teeth, and the World’s Simplest Language

Phil and Stephen present a sampler plate of curiosities — a few recent news stories that indicate what a truly weird (and therefore truly wonderful) world we live in. Mystery Music from the Moon World’s Smallest Language Will Let You Say Anything What might we do with it? Flying car just a couple of years …

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Feb
15

More Proof We Live in the Matrix: Jim Elvidge on Digital Reality

Jim Elvidge returns to The World Transformed to discuss his ideas about the digital nature of reality and the possibility that consciousness is separate from the brain and an influencer, if not the creator of reality. Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon discuss the implications of these ideas with Jim, including such far-reaching topics as: …

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Feb
08

Why the Pessimists Are Wrong (and They Are)

A recent Motley Fool essay by Morgan Housel raises a question we have asked many times before: Why Does Pessimism Sound So Smart? (Especially when things are so good.) Housel suggests several possible reasons: 1. Optimism appears oblivious to risks, so by default pessimism looks more intelligent. 2. Pessimism shows that not everything is moving in …

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Feb
01

Ninth Planet, Extinct Aliens, and Dimming Stars

Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon delve into some interesting recent space news. Is there a ninth planet out there beyond Neptune? And even if not, what can we expect to discover out there in the deepest reaches of the solar system? Meanwhile the lastest theory proposed to account for the Fermi Paradox is that The Aliens Are Extinct. …

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Jan
25

Best Days Behind Us? Or Before Us?

Writing for the New York Times, Eduardo Porter claims that America’s Best Days May Be Behind It. Citing Robert J. Gordon, author of The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Porter makes the following claims: Innovation will trundle along at the same pace of the last 40 years, Professor Gordon predicts. Despite the burst of progress of …

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Jan
16

Falling to Earth: David Bowie’s Legacy for SF and the Future

World Transformed favorite PJ Manney joins Phil and Stephen to discuss the life and legacy of musician / artist / polymath David Bowie. Beyond the world of the arts, how did he help to shape the future? Plus PJ talks about her recent experience discussing transhumanism with college students. BONUS: PJ’s thoughts on being nominated …

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Jan
10

Happiness Is Solving the World’s Problems

Phil and Stephen welcome philosopher and artificial intelligence researcher Andrés Gómez Emilsson to discuss the Hedonistic Imperative and Andres’ recent piece on Solving the World’s Problems which lays out four scenarios for how we might do so: 1) Homogeneous world ideology 2) Widespread social reform (full justice, rights and healthcare) 3) Universally accessible on-demand mystical experiences 4) Globally …

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