Douglas Adams on Artificial Life

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When will we build a paranoid android?

Will the basis of consciousness turn out to be a computational answer?

In this interview from 1997 Douglas Adams explores some of the big questions surrounding the creation of artificial life and how it may affect our relationship with technology in the future. The Hitchhiker's author ponders that pure mathematics and Zoology may one day combine forces to study the development of artificial life forms.

Even with the internet in its infancy, Adams recognised its significance in the development of artificial life via the organic growth of computer networks. With all this in mind he wonders just how long it might take to one day replicate the ‘algorithm for life’ inside a machine.

Douglas Adams also made a guest appearance in the 1991 Christmas Lectures, presented by Richard Dawkins, to read form his famous science fiction series. 

Themes

Talking Science, Technology

Details

Type:
Interview
People:
Douglas Adams
Published:
2012
Filmed:
1998
Credits:

Andy Taplin

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