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Spencer Wolf is the award-winning author of After Mind, a mindbender of a science fiction novel about mind-uploading and AI that I just finished reading. When Spencer was a young child attending summer camp he would treat his home-sickness by programming late into the night on his massive TRS-80 personal computer, which he carried in two separate suitcases. No surprise that Wolf grew up to be an award-winning author, and an all-around interesting guy, with a diverse set of personal experience, knowledge, and interests. All in all a perfect guest for my podcast.
During our 1 hour discussion with Spencer Wolf we cover a variety of interesting topics such as: the definition of science fiction and how he fell in love with it; his time at Paramount and working on blockbusters such as Titanic and Braveheart; Blade Runner and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?; androids, humans and life-expectancy; anthropomorphising AI and evolver and seeder types thereof; water, technology and being human; imagination, making mistakes and free will; Steve Mann‘s take on technology and water; Spencer Wolf’s Enhanced Inversion Test of AI and how it’s different from the classic Turing Test; the potential dangers from AI and our chances of surviving the technological singularity…
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Who is Spencer Wolf?
Spencer Wolf, author of After Mind, is a software Program Manager and award-winning author. Many years ago, he fell in love with AI, future worlds, and living a lot longer than humans are supposed to after reading the adapted screenplay for Blade Runner from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
Spencer was a key member of the creative advertising team at Paramount Studios, serving as Interim Executive Director and working closely with senior management on dozens of feature-film campaigns. He has worked in data center design, converted jet engines to ground-based power plants, and has swung a sledgehammer on construction sites. In his summation, humans need more life to pursue all their dreams.
Spencer earned his MBA from UCLA and his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Cornell University. He also spent one incredible year at the University of Sydney in Australia. Spencer currently lives in Minnesota with his wife, whom he met on travels in Austria, and his two children.