My Best Interview: About Global Brain, Consciousness and AI

May 31st, 2011

I was recently interviewed by Stephen Ibaraki and Alex Lin (CEO of ChinaValue) in what turned out to be the most interesting, far-reaching, and multi-disciplinary (and long) interview I’ve ever given. I was very pleased with the depth of their questions and the topics we covered. You can listen to the MP3 version here, or read a full-text transcript here.

Topics covered:

  • My work over the last few decades
  • Big life lessons I’ve had
  • My recent “Venture Production Studio” concept
  • Stealth ventures I’m working on (realtime web, wireless power, etc.)
  • Intelligent assistants
  • Predictions for the future
  • Augmented reality
  • The Singularity
  • Do we have free will? Will that change as Global Mind emerges?
  • The changing nature of individuality
  • The Psychological Singularity
  • The Global Brain – history and implications
  • The WebOS – Which cloud will win?
  • The Semantic Web – what it’s really for, is it being adopted?
  • What level does the brain compute at? Neural vs. quantum.
  • Nature of consciousness (Buddhist view vs. Western Scientific view) – “I think, therefore I am” vs. “I am, therefore I think”
  • The nature of self & possibility of artificial selves
  • The Singularity
  • John Searle’s Chinese Room thought experiment
  • Digital physics & cellular automata; Ed Fredkin & Stephen Wolfram
  • Bostrom’s Simulation Hypothesis
  • Buddhist views on ultimate nature of reality
  • My relationship with Peter Drucker (my grandfather) and his influence (management, knowledge workers, social sector etc.)
  • The shift to a now-centric civilization
  • The fragmentation of the Semantic Web
  • Freeing intelligence from human brains (like we did with knowledge)
  • Symbiosis; Part vs. Whole – When does the Global Brain change to a new level of order?
  • Beyond Homo Sapiens – What’s next? Cyborgs, collective beings, etc.
  • Technological ethics – what kind of future are we building?
  • Combining the best of Asian and Western intellectual approaches
  • IBM-Jeopardy Challenge