SOB: Emergent Complexity and Building Systems We Don’t Understand

If you landed in medieval times, could you build a phone? Or something even simpler, a pencil?

Join hosts Adam B. Levine, Andreas M. Antonopoulos, Stephanie Murphy & Jonathan Mohan for a deep dive into the wildly empowering, complex and terrifyingly automated world we live in. This wide ranging, philosophical discussion touches on such topics as the Suez Canal, Douglas Adams, combat drones, the Fourth Industrial Revolution and more.

The world’s complexity exponentially increases by the decade. A gradual systemization has led to the automation of specialized tasks, affording people free time to perform other, even more complex tasks. For example, consider navigation apps reducing the decision-making process from driving, or the rise of autonomous cars that will eventually remove human interaction altogether.

As the world depends more on an unimaginable web of logistics, what happens when something breaks? The evolution of automation from simple, rules-based systems to incredibly complex machine learning algorithms has diminished the ability to understand or predict these structures.

As much as we love decentralization and technological advancement, where do these aims fail us? Are we creating more problems than solving them?

Today’s show featured Andreas M. Antonopoulos, Stephanie Murphy, Jonathan Mohan and Adam B. Levine. This episode was edited by Jonas, with music by Jared Rubens and Gurty Beats.

Image credit: Luca Carrà/Unsplash, modified by Speaking of Bitcoin

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