Do we see reality as it is, do we exist inside the story that the brain tells itself, are we living in a simulation? Those are some of life’s biggest philosophical questions, thankfully Cognitive scientist Donald Hoffman helps explain all of the above including the case against reality, the conscious agent theory, and if reality is “false”. I initially called Donald Hoffman after watching his Ted Talk “Do we see reality as it is?” to discuss the simulation argument, is reality real, and if A.I. superintelligence can construct reality for us.
Most of us are pretty certain that we see reality “as it is” but Donald Hoffman suggests that mathematical models based on evolution by natural selection suggest that our strongest intuitions may be false. Donald believes that evolution gave us the equivalent of a computer interface that “hides” the real truth from us (ex: pixels, code, electrical voltages, etc) so that we can take action easily. We also covered the nature of consciousness, free will, synesthesia, the issues with space-time, causality, the self, and much more.
This was a mind-blowing talk and I tried to keep up the best I can, I hope you enjoy it!
Read more about Donald here: https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2016/04/the-illusion-of-reality/479559/
Watch Donald’s Ted Talk “Do we see reality as it is?”:
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Takis (real name Peter Takis) is a DJ/ producer from Winnipeg, Canada.