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Amor Mundi 6/28/15

In our Amor Mundi, we celebrate the end of marriage inequality in the U.S., reflect on the life of Clementa Pinckney with President Obama, and much more. Posted on 28 June 2015 | 8:01 pm

Amor Mundi 9/22/13

Hannah Arendt considered calling her magnum opus Amor Mundi: Love of the World. Instead, she settled upon The Human Condition. What is most difficult, Arendt writes, is to love the world as it is, with all the evil and suffering in it. And yet she came to do just that. Loving the world means neither…Read more Amor Mundi 9/22/13 Posted on 23 September 2013 | 3:46 pm

The Moral Roots of Income Inequality

Inequality is not simply a matter of numbers and economics. Thomas Edsall explores at the moral and cultural roots of income inequality last week in the New York Times. His essay takes as its basis a recent speech by Alan B. Krueger, President Obama’s Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, entitled “Fairness as an…Read more The Moral Roots of Income Inequality Posted on 5 July 2013 | 10:10 am

Looking Beyond A Digital Harvard

Graduation is upon us. Saturday I will be in full academic regalia mixing with the motley colors of my colleagues as we send forth yet another class of graduates onto the rest of their lives. I advised three senior projects this year. One student is headed to East Jerusalem, where she will be a fellow…Read more Looking Beyond A Digital Harvard Posted on 24 May 2013 | 12:22 pm

Beware of the Drones!

Thomas Levin of Princeton came to Bard Tuesday to give a lecture to the Drones Seminar, a weekly class I am participating in, led by my colleague Thomas Keenan and conceived by two of our students Arthur Holland and Dan Gettinger.  Levin has studied surveillance techniques for years and he came to think with us…Read more Beware of the Drones! Posted on 22 March 2013 | 4:45 pm

Labor of Love

China has embraced the idea of a Western college education in a big way.  As the NY Times reported recently, the country is making a $250 billion-a-year investment designed to give millions of young Chinese citizens a college education. “Just as the United States helped build a white-collar middle class in the late 1940s and…Read more Labor of Love Posted on 25 January 2013 | 1:51 pm

The Humanity of Robots

The Wall Street Journal ran an interview this week with Luke Muehlhauser, the Executive Director of the Singularity Institute. The Journal asked: Will Artificial Intelligence Make us Obsolete? Muehlhauser’s answer was, well yes. In his words: Cognitive science has discovered that everything the human mind does is done by information processing and machines can do…Read more The Humanity of Robots Posted on 18 October 2012 | 1:09 pm

Five Perspectives on “The Conquest of Space & the Stature of Man”

Read Hannah Arendt’s seminal 1963 essay, “The Conquest of Space and the Stature of Man”. Patrick Deenen, Rita Kogazon, Charles T. Rubin,  Stephen Bertman, and Peter Augustine Lawler provide five different perspectives on the essay and its continued relevance today. Posted on 20 October 2011 | 3:16 pm

Are we losing our humanity when we turn to machines?

According to Ron Arkin, a Professor of Computer Technology at Georgia  Tech and Director of the GeorgiaTech Mobile Robot Lab, “It is fairly easy to make robots that behave more ethically and humanely than humans on the battlefield.” What does it mean to be human? According to Roger Berkowitz, “Being human is the free and…Read more Are we losing our humanity when we turn to machines? Posted on 14 September 2011 | 4:51 pm

The Robot is Boss

John Markoff has a new installment in The New York Times Smarter Than You Think Series today, The Boss is Robotic, And Rolling Up Behind You. After an earlier article looking at the use of robots in the classroom, here Markoff looks at the use of robots to enhance and expand the reach of those…Read more The Robot is Boss Posted on 5 September 2010 | 9:16 am