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Till the bottom

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This is a space where episode after episode we will try to find a balance between informal conversation and formal argumentation. A space where time and time again we will try to use solid knowledge as a springboard to dive into careful speculation. And, most importantly, a place where we won’t hesitate to invite experts and curious minds to try to reach depths that we couldn’t have reached on our own.

This is a space where episode after episode we will try to find a balance between informal conversation and formal argumentation. A space where time and time again we will try to use solid knowledge as a springboard to dive into careful speculation. And, most importantly, a place where we won’t hesitate to invite experts and curious minds to try to reach depths that we couldn’t have reached on our own.
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Location:

United States

Description:

This is a space where episode after episode we will try to find a balance between informal conversation and formal argumentation. A space where time and time again we will try to use solid knowledge as a springboard to dive into careful speculation. And, most importantly, a place where we won’t hesitate to invite experts and curious minds to try to reach depths that we couldn’t have reached on our own.

Language:

English


Episodes

Episode 11. Just how "far to the right" will Europe swing? (with Matthaus Mittasch)

1/14/2019
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Dr. Matthaus Mittasch joins us to close the first season of Till The Bottom on a truly high note. Matthaus starts by re-telling some of the unsavory discriminatory incidents that he faced growing up in East Germany. Sooner than later the conversation became a hybrid between a thought exercise and a debate about the socio-political future of Germany and the rest of Europe. It is a fact that Europe is turning "right", but, how far will the continent sleepwalk into increasingly extreme forms...

Duration:01:37:37

Episode 9 1/2. Should there be limits to speech? (with Nakul Gote)

12/17/2018
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This is the last part of a series of conversations with Nakul Gote and we could rightly say that some of the best topics were saved for last. The conversation starts pretty much where the last one ended, that is, with Islam and the prospects of its reformation. Nevertheless it quickly became a much broader discussion about free speech and the all too prescient issue of "free exchange of ideas". We played the role of devil's advocates to try to highlight the possible pitfalls into which...

Duration:00:48:11

Episode 10. If the Matrix is conscious... bring it on! (with Dr. Till Korten)

12/17/2018
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In this episode Dr. Till Korten returns to talk about possible dystopian scenarios where a superintelligent Artificial Intelligence (AI) is suddenly unleashed upon this world. We argue that, although it is surely not a very pleasant thought, if the AI happens to be conscious then it would not be an absolute tragedy. But in order to get there we argue back and forth on what consciousness might be while trying to get rid of our anthropocentric biases. Easier said than done! Oh, and...

Duration:01:09:24

Episode 9. Trigger-warning alarm: culture, mass immigration and reforms in Islam (with Nakul Gote)

11/26/2018
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In this second episode with Nakul Gote we could not catch a break. The argument starts right off the bat and simply refused to subside. We thought that starting by attempting to define "Culture" would be a rather terse beginning. How naive and wrong we were. From then, things kept on ramping up. We talked about the challenges and downsides of cultural mixing when immigration occurs at an unusually high rate. This is an incredibly relevant issue since it has shaped the politics and social...

Duration:01:33:31

Episode 8. Immigration, integration and the holiness of cows

11/12/2018
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In this episode we invited Nakul Gote to prove to everybody that there is an unlikely but nevertheless very real link between immigration and the sacredness of cows. Yes, that was totally the plan. We started by telling some stories about our personal experiences as immigrants in Germany. We discuss issues regarding integration, within the host culture but especially adapting to the multicultural ambient of academia in our new host country. That naturally took us to talk about the...

Duration:01:16:17

Episode 7. The intelligence landscape: from bacteria to machines

10/28/2018
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In this episode we invited Dr. Till Korten to talk about what is perhaps the single capability that elicits the most pride and frustration in humans: Intelligence. We explored the topic from multiple angles. We tried to establish what lies at the core of intelligent behavior. We talked about intelligence displayed in various types of biological systems and eventually got to discuss the likelihood of making machines possessing general intelligence and, at some point, a level of intelligence...

Duration:01:51:29

Episode 6. Deconstructing the Guru effect... and Jordan Peterson

10/14/2018
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This episode is almost entirely inspired by Dan Sperber's seminal paper "The Guru effect", which can be thought as a sort of cognitive bug that often makes us judge deep what we have simply failed to grasp. We talk about the many ways in which complicated ways of expression fool us into thinking that we are in the presence of something transcendentally intelligent... if we could only understand it.The end of our path takes us to no other than to the Canadian Psychologist Dr. Jordan...

Duration:02:04:32

Episode 5. A look into the Zaatari Syrian refugee camp

9/30/2018
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In this episode we hosted the "Architect turned Sociologist" Sara Al-Nassir to talk about the refugee crisis triggered by the Syrian civil war. The conversation centers around Zaatari, the Syrian refugee camp established in Jordan back in 2012. We talk about its structural and social transformation through the years of the military conflict and we also look at several aspects of the crisis from the European angle. We hope you enjoy the conversation as much as we did and we would like to...

Duration:01:49:13

Episode 4. Where do minds and consciousness meet?

9/16/2018
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In this second episode with Santiago Cañon we try to get to some solid ground where to shore up the concept of what a mind is. Any kind of mind but especially the nature of a human mind. We then explore various ideas of what consciousness might be and wonder if it is a property that all types of minds have. We hope you enjoy this abstract but fascinating journey and would like to thank Santiago for accompanying us! We hope to get you back soon! Find us in: Our website:...

Duration:01:18:18

Episode 3. The nature of reality

9/3/2018
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In this episode we got a hold of friend and fellow scientist Santiago Cañon to bounce between philosophical currents, thought experiments like the “simulation argument”, the weirdness of quantum mechanics and even out-of-body experiences in order to get a grip on what constitutes Reality… in case such a thing actually exists. Find us in: Our website: https://tillthebottom.com/home/ Our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCMXM2Vc0d21wjDt5chP26sQ?view_as=subscriber Our...

Duration:01:07:33

Episode 2. Exit doors

8/19/2018
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In this episode we explore many (but not nearly all) of the paths that can take you on a one-way trip away from superstitious belief. We talk about the distrust for institutionalized religion, evolution, the longing for spirituality, morality and other topics that have the potential to either cement or undermine the foundations of the religious mindset. Spoiler: in our case all these issues opened doors away from religiosity. Oh! And sorry for the squeaky chairs, we are riding the...

Duration:01:09:54

Episode 1. Skepticism 101: Leaving religion

8/10/2018
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We are taking things very personal in this first episode of Till The Bottom. Here we sketch the paths that we followed to leave our respective religious traditions behind. This was a first and crucial step that unavoidably, and at times almost reluctantly, took us to acquire a "skeptical mindset" which we ultimately came to embrace and cherish. We decided to tell you this story as anecdotally as possible because we think that this would be the best way to begin to establish a more personal...

Duration:01:38:05