Books  |    |  October 6, 2015

What to Think About Machines That Think: Today’s Leading Thinkers on the Age of Machine Intelligence

By John Brockman.
Published by Harper.
576 pages.

Weighing in from the cutting-edge frontiers of science, today’s most forward-thinking minds explore the rise of “machines that think.” Stephen Hawking recently made headlines by noting, “The development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race.” Others, conversely, have trumpeted a new age of “superintelligence” in which smart devices will exponentially extend human capacities. No longer just a matter of science-fiction fantasy (2001, Blade Runner, The Terminator, Her, etc.), it is time to seriously consider the reality of intelligent technology, many forms of which are already being integrated into our daily lives. In that spirit, John Brockman, publisher of Edge. org (“the world’s smartest website” – The Guardian), asked the world’s most influential scientists, philosophers, and artists one of today’s most consequential questions: What do you think about machines that think?

Table of Contents

  1. Consciousness In Human-Level AI — Murray Shanahan
  2. Thinking Does Not Imply Subjugating — Steven Pinker
  3. Organic Intelligence Has No Long-Term Future — Martin Rees
  4. A Turning Point In Artificial Intelligence — Steve Omohundro
  5. AI Is I — Dimitar D. Sasselov
  6. If You Can’t Beat ’em, Join ’em — Frank Tipler
  7. Intelligent Machines on Earth and Beyond — Mario Livio
  8. I, for One, Welcome Our Machine Overlords — Antony Garrett Lisi
  9. Our Masters, Slaves, or Partners? — John Markoff
  10. Designed Intelligence — Paul Davies
  11. The Superintelligent Loner — Kevin P. Hand
  12. It’s Going to Be a Wild Ride — John C. Mather
  13. Is Anyone in Charge of This Thing? — David Christian
  14. Witness to the Universe — Timo Hannay
  15. Let’s Get Prepared! — Max Tegmark
  16. “Turing+” Questions — Tomaso Poggio
  17. An Epochal Human Event — Pamela McCorduck
  18. Welcome to Your Transhuman Self — Marcelo Gleiser
  19. We Are All Machines That Think — Sean Carroll
  20. The Control Crisis — Nicholas G. Carr
  21. We Built Them, but We Don’t Understand Them — Jon Kleinberg and Sendhil Mullainathan
  22. We Need to Do Our Homework — Jaan Tallinn
  23. What Do You Cane What Other Machines Think? — George Church
  24. Machines Cannot Think — Arnold Trehub
  25. No “I” and No Capacity for Malice — Roy Baumeister
  26. Leveraging Human Intelligence — Keith Devlin
  27. A Machine Is a “Matter” Thing — Emanuel Derman
  28. I Could Be Wrong — Freeman Dyson
  29. Why Can’t “Being” or “Happiness” Be Computed? — David Gelernter
  30. No Machine Thinks About the Eternal Questions — Leo M. Chalupa
  31. The Singularity—an Urban Legend? — Daniel C. Dennett
  32. Nano-Intentionality — W. Tecumseh Fitch
  33. A Beautiful (Visionary) Mind — Irene Pepperberg
  34. The Colossus Is a BFG — Nicholas Humphrey
  35. Self-Aware AI? Not in 1,000 Years! — Rolf Dobelli
  36. Machines Don’t Think, but Neither Do People — Cesar Hidalgo
  37. Tangled Up in the Question — James J. O’Donnell
  38. Mistaking Performance for Competence — Rodney A. Brooks
  39. AI Will Make You Smarter — Terrence J. Sejnowski
  40. Shallow Learning — Seth Lloyd
  41. Natural Creatures of a Natural World — Carlo Rovelli
  42. Three Observations on Artificial Intelligence — Frank Wilczek
  43. When I Say “Bruno Latour,” I Don’t Mean “Banana Till” — John Naughton
  44. It’s Still Early Days — Nick Bostrom
  45. Evolving AI — Donald D. Hoffman
  46. Machines That Think Are in the Movies — Roger Schank
  47. Head Transplants? — Juan Enriquez
  48. AI–AL — Esther Dyson
  49. Brains and Other Thinking Machines — Tom Griffiths
  50. They’ll Do More Good Than Harm — Mark Pagel
  51. Keeping Them on a Leash — Robert Provine
  52. The Next Replicator — Susan Blackmore
  53. What If We’re the Microbiome of the Silicon AI? — Tim O’Reilly
  54. You Are What You Eat — Andy Clark
  55. AI’s System of Rights and Government — Moshe Hoffman
  56. The Robot with a Hidden Agenda — Brian Knutson
  57. Can Submarines Swim? — William Poundstone
  58. Fear Not the AI — Gregory Benford
  59. What, Me Worry? — Lawrence M. Krauss
  60. Design Machines to Deal with the World’s Complexity — Peter Norvig
  61. The Rise of Storytelling Machines — Jonathan Gottschall
  62. Think Protopia, Not Utopia or Dystopia — Michael Shermer
  63. The Limits of Biological Intelligence — Chris Dibona
  64. Every Society Gets the AI It Deserves — Joscha Bach
  65. The Beasts of AI Island — Quentin Hardy
  66. We Will Become One — Clifford Pickover
  67. An Extraterrestrial Observation on Human Hubris — Ernst Poppel
  68. He Who Pays the AI Calls the Tune — Ross Anderson
  69. I Think, Therefore AI — W. Daniel Hillis
  70. What Will the Place of Humans Be? — Paul Saffo
  71. The Great AI Swindle — Dylan Evans
  72. The Odds on AI — Anthony Aguirre
  73. A New Wisdom of the Body — Eric J. Topol
  74. From Regular-I to AI — Roger Highfield
  75. We Need More Than Thought — Gordon Kane
  76. Are We Going in the Wrong Direction? — Scott Atran
  77. Two Cognitive Functions Machines Still Lack — Stanislas Dehaene
  78. Among the Machines, Not Within the Machines — Matt Ridley
  79. Another Kind of Diversity — Stephen M. Kosslyn
  80. Narratives and Our Civilization — Luca De Biase
  81. Human Responsibility — Margaret Levi
  82. Amplifiers–Implementers of Human Choices — D. A. Wallach
  83. Make the Thing Impossible to Hate — Rory Sutherland
  84. Actress Machines — Bruce Sterling
  85. Call Them Artificial Aliens — Kevin Kelly
  86. Do Machines Do? — Martin Seligman
  87. Denkraumverlust — Timothy Taylor
  88. Analog, the Revolution That Dares Not Speak Its Name — George Dyson
  89. The Values of Artificial Intelligence — S. Abbas Raza
  90. Artificial Selection and Our Grandchildren — Bruce Parker
  91. Really Good Hacks — Neil Gershenfeld
  92. The Airbus and the Eagle — Daniel L. Everett
  93. Humanness — Douglas Coupland
  94. Manipulators and Manipulanda — Josh Bongard
  95. Are We Thinking More Like Machines? — Ziyad Marar
  96. Just a New Fractal Detail in the Big Picture — Brian Eno
  97. eGaia, a Distributed Technical-Social Mental System — Marti Hearst
  98. The Hive Mind — Chris Anderson
  99. The Global Artificial Intelligence Is Here — Alex (Sandy) Pentland
  100. Will Computers Become Like Thinking, Talking Dogs? — Randolph Nesse
  101. Thinking Machines and Ennui — Richard E. Nisbett
  102. Naches from Our Machines — Samuel Arbesman
  103. No Shared Theory of Mind — Gerald Smallberg
  104. Blind to the Core of Human Experience — Eldar Shafir
  105. An Intuitive Theory of Machine — Christopher Chabris
  106. Thinking Saltmarshes — Ursula Martin
  107. Killer Thinking Machines Keep Our Conscience Clean — Kurt Gray
  108. When Thinking Machines Break the Law — Bruce Schneier
  109. Electric Brains — Rebecca Mackinnon
  110. Robodoctors — Gerd Gigerenzer
  111. Can Machines Ever Be As Smart As Three-Year-Olds? — Alison Gopnik
  112. Tic-Tac-Toe Chicken — Kevin Slavin
  113. AI Will Make Us Smart and Robots Afraid — Alun Anderson
  114. When Thinking Machines Are Not a Boon — Mary Catherine Bateson
  115. Justice for Machines in an Organicist World — Steve Fuller
  116. Don’t Be a Chauvinist About Thinking — Tania Lombrozo
  117. This Sounds Like Heaven — Virginia Heffernan
  118. Machines That Work Until They Don’t — Barbara Strauch
  119. The Moving Goalposts — Sheizaf Rafaeli
  120. Directionless Intelligence — Edward Slingerland
  121. Human Culture As the First AI — Nicholas A. Christakis
  122. Beyond the Uncanny Valley — Joichi Ito
  123. The Figure or the Ground? — Douglas Rushkoff
  124. Fast, Accurate, and Stupid — Helen Fisher
  125. Will They Make Us Better People? — Stuart Russell
  126. The Value-Loading Problem — Eliezer S. Yudkowsky
  127. In Our Image — Kate Jeffery
  128. The Umwelt of the Unanswerable — Maria Popova
  129. Will They Think About Themselves? — Jessica L. Tracy and Kristin Laurin
  130. Organic Versus Artifactual Thinking — June Gruber and Raul Saucedo
  131. Context Surely Matters — Paul Dolan
  132. How to Prevent an Intelligence Explosion — Thomas G. Dietterich
  133. Thinking from the Inside or the Outside? — Matthew D. Lieberman
  134. Soft Authoritarianism — Michael Vassar
  135. What Will AIs Think About Us? — Gregory Paul
  136. A John Henry Moment — Andrian Kreye
  137. Machines Aren’t into Relationships — N. J. Enfield
  138. The Next Phase of Human Evolution — Nina Jablonski
  139. Domination Versus Domestication — Gary Klein
  140. Machines Won’t Be Thinking Anytime Soon — Gary Marcus
  141. Can We Avoid a Digital Apocalypse? — Sam Harris
  142. Could Thinking Machines Bridge the Empathy Gap? — Molly Crockett
  143. Caring Machines — Abigail Marsh
  144. Engines of Freedom — Alexander Wissner-Gross
  145. Any Questions? — Sarah Demers
  146. Thinking Machines = Old Algorithms on Faster Computers — Bart Kosko
  147. The Disadvantages of Metaphor — Julia Clarke
  148. A Universal Basis for Human Dignity — Michael McCullough
  149. Thinking About People Who Think Like Machines — Haim Harari
  150. Metathinking — Hans Halvorson
  151. The Value of Anticipation — Christine Finn
  152. An Ecosystem of Ideas — Dirk Helbing
  153. The Iron Law of Intelligence — John Tooby
  154. Thought-Stealing Machines — Maximilian Schich
  155. Unintended Consequences — Satyajit Das
  156. It Depends — Robert Sapolsky
  157. Will Machines Do Our Thinking for Us? — Athena Vouloumanos
  158. Sorry to Bother You — Brian Christian
  159. Moral Machines — Benjamin K. Bergen
  160. After the Plug Is Pulled — Laurence C. Smith
  161. Monitoring and Managing the Planet — Giulio Boccaletti
  162. Panexperientialism — Ian Bogost
  163. When Is a Minion Not a Minion? — Aubrey De Grey
  164. Not Buggy Enough — Michael I. Norton
  165. More Funk, More Soul, More Poetry and Art — Thomas A. Bass
  166. The Future Is Blocked to Us — Hans Ulrich Obrist
  167. An Immaterial Thinkable Machine — Koo Jeong-A
  168. Baffled and Obsessed — Richard Foreman
  169. Who’s Afraid of Artificial Intelligence? — Richard H. Thaler
  170. I See a Symbiosis Developing — Scott Draves
  171. Reimagining the Self in a Distributed World — Matthew Ritchie
  172. It’s Easy to Predict the Future — Raphael Bousso
  173. Fear of a God, Redux — James Croak
  174. Tulips on My Robot’s Tomb — Andres Roemer
  175. Toward a Naturalistic Account of Mind — Lee Smolin
  176. Machines That Think? Nuts! — Stuart A. Kauffman
  177. The Future Possibility-Space of Intelligence — Melanie Swan
  178. Love — Tor Nørretranders
  179. An Uncanny Three-Ring Test for Machina sapiens — Kai Krause
  180. Free from Us — Georg Diez
  181. Flawless AI Seems Like Science Fiction — Eduardo Salcedo-AlbaraN
  182. Emergent Hybrid Human–Machine Chimeras — Maria Spiropulu
  183. What If They Need to Suffer? — Thomas Metzinger
  184. Will We Recognize It When It Happens? — Beatrice Golomb
  185. Metarepresentation — Noga Arikha
  186. Envoi: A Short Distance Ahead—and Plenty to Be Done — Dennis Hassabis, Shane Kegg abd Mustafa Suleyman

About the Author
The publisher of the online science salon Edge.org, John Brockman is the editor of Know This, This Idea Must Die, This Explains Everything, This Will Make You Smarter, and other volumes.