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EP 117: Artificial Intelligence (Part 2) w/ Prof. Nick Bostrom, Dr. Seth Baum, & the Creators of

In Part 2 on Artificial Intelligence, we examine the possibility of A.I. achieving "the singularity," the moment when technology achieves human-like consciousness and the possible consequences for humanity if and when machines surpass us.

Sam Vincent and Jonathan Brackley, the creators of AMC's drama series HUMANS, discuss how intelligent machines and people might interact, what the singularity might be like from the perspective of a conscious A.I., and whether a man-made system that thinks and feels like a human being should be entitled to human rights.

Then Dr. Seth Baum, Executive Director of the Global Catastrophic Risk Institute, will map out several scenarios that could lead to the end of human civilization at the hands of A.I. He talks about how more traditional existential threats like a nuclear disaster or a pandemic might play into it, and we also discuss the more near-term issues of lethal autonomous weapons and hackers infiltrating intelligent systems.

Finally I talk with Professor Nick Bostrom, Director of the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford University. His best-selling book Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies has won acclaim from tech leaders including Elon Musk and Bill Gates. He warns that the singularity could come much faster than we think in the form of an "intelligence explosion" and humanity would be wise to hope for the best but prepare for the worst. He’ll outline ideas for the best ways to get A.I. to work WITH humans, rather than against us, and he'll talk about his mission to persuade the tech industry and popular media to take the issue of artificial intelligence seriously.

Special thanks to the Milken Institute for hosting parts of this interview during the 2016 Milken Global Conference. Visit to learn more about their work in the areas of science, education and innovation.

If you enjoyed today’s podcast, then you can order Nick Bostrom’s Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies on Amazon. Follow him at or at Keep up with Seth Baum at and or you follow him on Twitter at @SethBaum. Follow Sam Vincent and Jonathan Brackley on Twitter at @smavincent and @JonBrackley. Visit the fan site for AMC'S HUMANS at, and you can watch the first season of HUMANS at AMC On Demand or Amazon.

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