E705: Sam Harris, “Waking Up” host, author, philosopher & neuroscientist, on dawn of A.I. & the uncanny valley of robotics, science of morality, mindful meditation & Trump’s lies – PART 1

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about this episode

Today’s guest is Sam Harris, philosopher, neuroscientist and best-selling author of books including “Waking Up,” “The End of Faith,” “Letter to a Christian Nation,” and “The Moral Landscape.” Jason and Sam explore a wide range of topics, including the ethics of robots, the value of meditation, Trump’s lies, and his most recent obsession AI, which stemmed from an initial conversation with Elon Musk. Sam argues that the threat of uncontrolled AI is one of the most pressing issues of our time and poses the question: Can we build AI without losing control over it? The two then discuss why meditation is so important for entrepreneurs and business people. Sam has built his brand and fan base around radical honesty and authenticity, so the conversation naturally segues to Trump and his lies. This is only the first of two parts, so stay tuned for much more.

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Timestamps:

01:03: Jason introduces his guest.

02:08: Sam explains how his interest in A.I. started with a conversation with Elon Musk.

06:01: Wide A.I. vs. General A.I.

09:27: Sam explores the threat of uncontrolled A.I., the chasm between insiders and the public, and how to avoid an arms race.

17:28: Sam compares/contrasts his publishing experience between his books and podcast.

21:28: Westworld crosses the uncanny valley of robotics and will make you question your own humanity.

27:20: What does this say about video game morality?

29:20: Jason asks Sam what his prediction is for when we will reach the uncanny valley of robotics.

36:12: Sam gives a teaser about his upcoming meditation app.

38:11: Sam talks about the power of mindfulness & meditation: “Changing the degree to which you are lost in negative thoughts is as good as changing the world.”

47:29: Sam mentions his book “Lying”, and the conversation segues into Trump and his lies.

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