Philosophy Forums & Roundtables

2017 Philosophy Symposium: “Vulnerable Humanity, Predictable Machines” (Part 2)

Our 2016 Philosophy Symposium “Vulnerable Humanity, Predictable Machines” was the first of three community events geared to initiate a public discussion about the human-technology relationship and the promises and perils of artificial intelligence (AI).   Our second in this series of symposiums is slated for Thursday, April 27th 2017 in Simperman Hall Lecture Room 101/202 at Carroll College.

Thank you to The Philosophy Department at Carroll College, the Center for Innovation in Technology team at Carroll College & the Depth Psychology Alliance for your generous support and sponsorship of our April 2017 Philosophy Symposium.

What:  Philosophy Symposium (Part 2 of a 3 Part Series)
When: Thursday, April 27th (7pm-9pm)
Where: In Simperman Hall Lecture Room 101/202 at Carroll College (1601 N. Benton Avenue, Helena MT 59625)
Cost:  FREE
Symposium Moderator/Facilitator:  Dr. John Ries, Ph.D. (Professor of Theology & Department Chair, Carroll College)
Symposium Co-Directors:  Marisa Diaz-Waian, M.A. (Founder & Executive Director of Merlin CCC), Tim Holmes, M.F.A. (Local & International Artist) & Pastor Russ Danaher (Pastor & ADA Coordinator, Montana Department of Corrections)
Other:  Open to all Helena community members and students at the high school & college levels
For More Information:  Contact Marisa Diaz-Waian at #406.439.5788 or [email protected]

Symposium Topic: In our first symposium we discussed the human-technology relationship and the promises and perils of artificial intelligence in terms of some of the less emphasized properties of the human spirit — namely, our propensity to be vulnerable, unpredictable, arbitrary, and at times, unreasonable. The suggestion was that it was these things (not our ability to reason) that make material reductionism nonsensical and, thus save humanity from a life of artificial robotic realities.

In this symposium, we will continue our investigation of the human-technology relationship. First, we will continue to explore some of the uses and meanings of vulnerability raised in the first symposium, as well as its relationship to the human spirit. Second, we will consider various visions of our future technological world (is there reason to be optimistic? pessimistic?). Finally, we will look at some ethical implications posed by an increasingly technology- dependent and artificially-intelligent world.

Regarding ethics, our focus will be on the less obvious implications of our technologies and all- connected network when viewed as extensions of ourselves. What do our creations say about us and where we’re going? Obvious issues might include hacker vulnerability, privacy issues and legal precedents. But are there less obvious ethical issues we should be considering as well?  View/download the complete symposium abstract here!

Invited Speakers Include: Dr. Eric Hall, Ph.D. (Associate Professor of Theology, Carroll College), Edward Gray, M.S., LCPC (Depth Psychotherapist), Dr. Kelly Cline, Ph.D. (Astrophysicist & Associate Professor of Mathematics, Carroll College), Dr. Edward Glowienka, Ph.D. (Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Carroll College), Dr. Mark Smillie, Ph.D. (Professor of Philosophy, Carroll College), Michael Sangray (Cyber Security Engineer, Anderson ZurMuehlen & Adjunct Instructor of Computer Science & Cyber Security, Carroll College) and Dr. Nikki Honzel, Ph.D. (Cognitive Neuroscientist & Assistant Professor of Psychology, Carroll College).


Want to learn more about some of our other philosophy-based community events & socials?  Click on one the applicable link(s) below:

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