Skeptic Check: AI Comes Alive

Skeptic Check: AI Comes Alive

Mon, 10/24/2022 – 17:28

Don’t hurt the machine’s feelings by failing to listen to this episode

When a Google software engineer claimed that a piece of chatbot software was sentient, it was a major story. Just like your dog is sentient, could it be that some computer code – a chatbot system called LaMDA – has feelings?

But was it truly sentient, or was it pulling algorithmic wool over our eyes? Were we simply being fooled by high-tech mimicry? In this, our regular look at critical thinking: Skeptic Check, we ask what is the evidence that this system is sentient. Also, even A.I. that’s not sentient can still be powerful – and that has serious implications. 


  • Blake Lemoine – Software engineer and artificial intelligence researcher
  • Oren Etzioni – Emeritus Professor at the University of Washington, and former CEO at the Allen Institute for AI in Seattle
  • Mark Coeckelbergh – Professor of Philosophy of Media and Technology, University of Vienna, and author of  “Robot Ethics

Featuring music by Dewey Dellay and Jun Miyake

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