355 episodes

Crisp conversations with critical thinkers at the leading edge of science, technology, politics, and social systems.

The Jim Rutt Show The Jim Rutt Show

    • Science
    • 4.9 • 234 Ratings

Crisp conversations with critical thinkers at the leading edge of science, technology, politics, and social systems.

    EP 240 Stuart Kauffman on the Construction of Space-Time

    EP 240 Stuart Kauffman on the Construction of Space-Time

    Jim talks with Stuart Kauffman about cosmology, fundamental physics, and the nature of dark matter, dark energy, and inflation. They discuss how Stuart moved into these fields, the Michelson-Morley experiment, special relativity, cosmic background radiation, the new period of precision cosmology, dark energy, why the universe is expanding faster, the Hubble tension, the baryonic Tully-Fisher relation, entanglement, nonlocality & whether it is fundamental, quantum gravity, why particle physics is collectively autocatalytic, stepping through the delay hypothesis, Planck time, the past hypothesis problem, the life ensemble, dark matter as a Ricci soliton, requirements for the rate of inflation, why cold dark matter may explain the cosmic web, Mach's principle, and much more.

    EP 239 Alex Fink on Improving Information Quality

    EP 239 Alex Fink on Improving Information Quality

    Jim talks with Alex Fink about his company Otherweb, which uses AI to filter out fake news and create a more reliable news ecosystem. They discuss how Alex came to care about this problem, the decline of news media, how advertising wrecked the internet, the idea of an info agent, Otherweb's curation engine, information filtering systems, unhooking the internet from advertising, the fight between AdBlock and Facebook, the decision to disinclude paywalled websites, economic tradeoffs of paywalling, AI in movie production, money-on-money return, initial results of the printing press, watermarking images, fair witnesses, how porn has driven internet innovation, catering to the seven deadly sins, social media addiction, binding the future of the company, public benefit corporations, the stewardship capital model, the crowdfunding process, and much more.

    • 1 hr
    EP 238 Sam Sammane on Humanity's Role in an AI-Dominated Future

    EP 238 Sam Sammane on Humanity's Role in an AI-Dominated Future

    Jim talks with Sam Sammane about the ideas in his new book The Singularity of Hope: Humanity's Role in an AI-Dominated Future. They discuss the hype around generative AI, obstacles to AGI, reinforcement learning, intuition & emotion, human-AI augmentation, rules of thumb, the plausibility of the brain as a quantum computer, Jim's ScriptHelper project, machine-like jobs that will likely be automated, the age of retraining, using AI to self-augment, the digital proletariat, a compassionate approach to rethinking society, a priesthood for investing, AI-augmented drug discovery, a major uplift in education, love as an engine of learning, the danger of considering AI in education as cheating, personal info agents, advances in tuning of LLMs, brain-computer interfaces, roads toward AGI, the pure AI singularity, the limits of our understanding of intelligence, collecting wisdom, and much more.

    EP 237 Simon DeDeo on the Odds of Major Civil Violence

    EP 237 Simon DeDeo on the Odds of Major Civil Violence

    Jim talks with Simon DeDeo about their wager concerning the likelihood of civil violence and mass killings in America in the next decade. They discuss the terms of the wager, the appropriate orders of magnitude, Alex Garland's Civil War, the American readiness to use violence, honor cultures, the movement from violence to political violence, industrial mass murder, polarization, the one-dimensionality of current elites, basins of attraction, statistical distributions of violence, Rene Girard's theory of mimetic desire, measuring political distance, the constant motion of contemporary American political views, tribalization around red-blue politics, door-holding & just-so stories, sexual signaling, the unreality of woke debates, accumulating factors that could lead to a brushfire, gun rights, the dilettantism of extremist groups, 3 specific scenarios of inciting conflicts, making sense of a post-ideological world, the question of who rules, and much more. 

    • 1 hr 32 min
    EP 236 Gregg Henriques on Free Will vs Determinism

    EP 236 Gregg Henriques on Free Will vs Determinism

    Jim talks with Gregg Henriques about his take on the free will versus determinism debate. They discuss the importance of definitions, the enlightenment gap, the complexity lens, why "will" is confusing & choice is a better referent, free choice vs determinism, levels of analysis, description vs explanation, freedom as description, the tree of knowledge system, ontological jumps in evolutionary complexification, a stack of emergences, systems of justification, the concept of agency, layered agency, animal decision-making, Mind2 consciousness, freedom as recursive self-awareness, the emergence of personhood, explicit self-consciousness with awareness of consequence, top-down causation, minimal elements of the debate, why Sapolsky's arguments may be dangerous, and much more.

    • 36 min
    EP 235 Robin Hanson on Beware Cultural Drift

    EP 235 Robin Hanson on Beware Cultural Drift

    Jim talks with Robin Hanson about the ideas in his essay "Beware Cultural Drift: Thoughts on modernity's monoculture mistake." They discuss drift in fundamental cultural values, the current unprecedented rate of change, boutique multiculturalism, weak selection pressures, drift without selection, understanding small cultures, agency risk, comparing corporate cultures with macro-cultures, the decrease in macro-cultures, the convergence of global elite culture, worldwide norms vs cultural sphere norms, fertility habits & falling fertility, fertility decline as a symptom, 2 kinds of stories cultural elites tell, context-dependent vs learning-based drivers, the connection between deeper goals & subgoals, turning the ship vs getting on lifeboats, joining the opposition, differential reproduction & the fall of Rome, conservatism, totalitarianism, deep multiculturalism, coherent pluralism, getting to the stars, artificial minds, why Robin is pro-cult, pressure to collapse into red-blue tribalism, rates of innovation, and much more.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
234 Ratings

234 Ratings

Big fan3345 ,

Informative, intelligent conversations!!

My favorite podcast, so smart and informative. Right combination of asking and listening, but also making his own good contributions to an engaging conversation.

Dgp1321 ,

Great podcast

This is the one you’ve been looking for!

@gilly1965 ,

Max serendipity podcast

Love Jim’s eclectic guests and his tell-it-like-it-is commentary. My favorite podcast, even better than Kara and Scott.

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