Hosted by John Lobell, we talk with visionaries – people in the arts, technology, science, culture, and spirituality

Visionaries - 08.14.17

“Jeremy Lent.” Our guest is Jeremy Lent, author of “The Patterning Instinct: A Cultural History of Humanity’s Search for Meaning.” Jeremy is a writer and the founder and president of the nonprofit Liology Institute, dedicated to fostering a worldview that could enable humanity to thrive sustainably on the earth. You’ll find the Liology Institute at liology.org. We discuss Eastern and Western worldview, the nature of science, how we can understand the world non-reductively, and how we can live in greater harmony.

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Visionaries - 08.07.17

“Creative Thinking.” In his book, “The Act of Creation,” Arthur Koestler proposes a general theory of creativity the he calls "bisociation" – a blending of elements drawn from two previously unrelated lines of thought into a new matrix of meaning. Today we look at some examples of this kind of thinking. Today, particularly in academia, we are discouraged from going outside of our fields, but perhaps that is the best way to break new ground.

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Visionaries - 07.24.17

A hundred and fifty years ago we began to feel the impact of industrialization. Before, artisans made the things we used. After, industrial designers designed prototypes that would then be mass produced. But the era of mass production is ending. Today we talk about new ways of making that will change everything about our lives. We will look at some clips from the YouTube: “Neil Gershenfeld: "The Third Digital Revolution" - Solid 2014 Keynote” which you can find at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L0RDrSKenGo

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Visionaries - 07.17.17

“Is the Universe Conscious?” A conversation with Dr. Gregory L. Matloff, emeritus associate and adjunct associate professor of physics at New York City College of Technology (NYCCT), who has coordinated the astronomy program at that institution, has consulted for the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, is a Fellow of the British interplanetary Society, is a Hayden Associate at the American Museum of Natural History and is a Corresponding Member of the International Academy of Astronautics. His pioneering research in solar-sail technology has been utilized by NASA in plans for extra-solar probes and in consideration of technologies to divert Earth-threatening asteroids.

Dr. Matloff’s work is discussed in an NBC article, “Is the Universe Conscious? Some of the world's most renowned scientists are questioning whether the cosmos has an inner life similar to our own.” You will find the article at:  https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/universe-conscious-ncna772956

On Dr. Matloff’s website, you will find discussions of interstellar travel, the search for intelligent life, and lots more. Go to:  http://www.gregmatloff.com

See an article, “Can Panpsychism Become an Observational Science?” by Gregory L. Matloff at:  http://jcer.com/index.php/jcj/article/view/579

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“Exponential Growth.” Our minds are set up to think “linearly.” If we take 30 one-meter steps, we expect to be 30 meters (30 yards) away. But what if we were to take 30 “exponential” steps? (Each step double the previous — first step 1 meter, second 2 meters, third 4 meters, forth 8 meters, etc.) How far would we have gone? Around the block? Actually, we would have circled the earth 27 times. We have long seen this exponential growth in our computers (Moore’s Law), and the smart phones in our pockets today outpace the super computers of the 1980s. But now it is showing up everywhere. What will this mean?

 
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Visionaries - 06.26.17

“Luis Arana.” Another conversation with Luis Arana, senior artificial intelligence engineer for Robots Without Borders. What will our society be like when all is automated and there are very few jobs? Luis’s focus is building humanitarian AI systems and robotics to solve widespread problems in society. See what Luis is up to at: https://robotswithoutborders.io

 
 
 
 
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Visionaries - 06.19.17

“Another Look at Marshall McLuhan.” The media guru, Marshall McLuhan, was one of the most quoted figures of the 1960s and one most influential minds of the second half of the 20th century. He remains the best source for understanding the connectivity of our 21st century. Everybody has heard that “the medium is the message,” but what exactly does that mean? http://www.marshallmcluhan.com

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Visionaries - 06.12.17

“Creativity and Destruction.” What do Beethoven, Picasso, Thelonious Monk, and Robert Venturi have in common? And share with Angela Duckworth, Lynn Margulis, Kara Walker, and Kathy Acker? They all destroyed an existing cultural form as they created a new one. Today we look at Nietzsche’s para;e of the camel, the lion, and the child as a foundation for creativity.

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“How Education Suppresses Initiative.” We like to think of our schools as progressive, but they certainly don’t encourage initiative or independent thought. From Adderall and Ritalin to group-think, we train ourselves to avoid challenging dominant thought.

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“What’s Up With Science, Part 2: Thoughts on Evolution.” Peter Thiel lists to ask, “What do you believe that almost no one else believes.” That’s the start. The hard part is to talk about it, and that is discouraged in today’s world. We look at some ideas, and one is evolution driven by patterns.

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