Sam Devis is a former pastor who experienced a faith deconversion a couple of years ago similar to that of my brother, Bryan.
After reading Evolution 2.0, Sam and I got together to discuss my journey from fundamentalism to where I am today. We cover many fascinating aspects from Darwinist Jerry Coyne’s outrage to the nature of fundamentalist belief structures to evolution and entrepreneurship to questions about the cosmos and freewill.
In the year 2000, Silicon Valley titan Bill Joy delivered a bombshell in Wired magazine: “Why the Future Doesn’t Need Us.” He warned: Future machines will have no need of human beings, and we will have to compete with them for resources.
Not only is this NOT going to happen, it’s a handy distraction from the real problem.
All those sci-fi “computers taking over the world” stories like HAL9000 and Terminator are impossible given the current definition of computer.
As are the predictions of mass unemployment. As is the much-ballyhooed “singularity” when we humans upload ourselves into the cloud and become immortal.
Such scenarios require something vastly different than anything we are building today.
Construction is Not Computation, and the World is Not a Theorem
Einstein’s theory of relativity overturned Newtonian physics in the early
1900s. Nevertheless “Newtonian” thinking has remained firmly entrenched in
science. Certainly all scientists now agree that at the subatomic level and at
near light speed, quantum physics overtakes Newtonian physics. But this
has had very little effect on biology, and has done nothing to overturn the
“reductionist” view of science, which says that everything is merely the sum
of its parts and all can be modeled by mathematics.
Stuart Kauffman and computer scientist Andrea Roli have written a new
paper that proves evolving biology in principle cannot be reduced to
computation. This is as devastating to materialistic science as Gödel’s
Incompleteness Theorem was to mathematics. In fact it is equivalent –
because it shows that evolving organisms embody incompleteness.
Induction not deduction. And induction cannot come from deduction;
therefore biology is not strictly computational.
Thus Kauffman and Roli have pulled the rug out from under ultra-traditional
views of physics. (Not everyone is going to be happy about this.) Here, Perry
Marshall and Stuart Kauffman jazz improvise on the vast implications of this
new, holistic view of the universe.
Today I offer a simple explanation of cancer. It’s far bigger than just cancer because it’s a basic truth of all life:
The problem with cancer cells is that they are doing what they want to do. All the chemotherapy in the world will only strengthen their resolve to do it with more gusto.
Cancer is not essentially about malfunctioning genes or broken parts. Those things are real, but they are symptoms, not the problem. If you want to cure cancer, start by making cancer cells want to go back to being a cooperative part of you.
Rob Berkley left this earth December 2019 as a result of cancer. 58. Rob was THE most empathic and warm-hearted individual in the entire marketing space (I’m not exaggerating). When you would sit down with him you would feel his warmth focusing on you like an infrared heat lamp.
He was one of my most valuable business advisors. Being trained by him and Victor Cheng was like having Oprah and Stephen Hawking together in the same room.
Stormy weather nearly prevented me from making his memorial at Martha’s Vineyard, but I managed to snag the boat ride and I’ll never forget the December 18 solstice sun streaming through the windows at his somber yet joyful gathering.
The other thing I will never forget is meeting his wife Debbie for the first time, right there at his memorial service. I had heard much about her, and she had heard about me, but we had never crossed paths.
I approached her in their kitchen and introduced myself. “Perry! I am so delighted to meet you!” She faced me squarely, looked deep into my eyes and connected, human to human. I instantly felt the jolt of her conviction and aliveness. She wrapped her arms around me, embraced me and welcomed me as though I were a friend of 25 years. Her energy was so palpable I was momentarily startled.
It only makes sense that Rob would marry a woman like Debbie.
Today I would like to share Rob’s last interview with you: a very candid conversation between Rob, Debbie and their caregiver and collaborator Meredith, describing humility and courage in the face a terminal diagnosis:
Why does the world need both mathematical proof AND a $10 million prize verifying that we have failed to answer biology’s most basic questions? Why does the world need a science paper like “Biology transcends the limits of computation”? This video explains.