Ben and Tao think therefore they are, getting mindfully and consciously philosophical, in 2015’s subaquatic survival horror existential crisis cultivator, SOMA. The conversation gets as deep as the abyss, with topics covering euthanasia; the nature of human existence, consciousness and digital transcendence; different forms of horror - the horrifying and the horrendous; artificial intelligence, super intelligence, digital taps and the Paperclip Maximizer hypothetical; and the concept of the ‘Human Black Box’ to document the last seconds of people’s lives. Plus, Tao becomes the second person to diagnose Ben with Oppositional Defiant Disorder. Tao is not a doctor. Caution: a crap ton of story spoilers from early in the pod. They are forecast in advance.
Content Warning: PEGI 15. Swearing, sounds of screaming. Tao’s tap. The horror, the horror…
SOMA was released on September 22, 2015. It’s a sci-fi horror game from Frictional Games, the creators of Amnesia: The Dark Descent.
The name SOMA is not an acronym, it originates from the Greek word σῶμα (soma) which refers to the body, specifically the body as distinct from the mind or the soul.
Robert Nozick was an American philosopher.
The Paperclip Maximizer is a thought experiment described by Swedish philosopher Nick Bostrom, author of the book Superintelligence.
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