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Physical Attraction

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We are a physics podcast. But not just that - interviews with scientists, scholars, authors and reflections on the history and future of science and technology are all in the wheelhouse. Over the years, for over 200 episodes, we've had shows on the astrophysics of stars, a comprehensive history of nuclear fusion, thermodynamics, particle physics, climate change, economics, philosophy, the psychology of conspiracy theories, and even the lives of Louisiana Senator Huey Long, or scientists under Stalin in the Soviet Union. 

We are an independent show: everything you hear is created by one person out of passion and love. My aim in producing this show is never to talk down to people, but instead to discuss fascinating and vital subjects with scientific rigour, compassion, and an eye for narrative: to educate, inform, and entertain. I hope that you, the listener, will find something you like here. 

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We had a sister podcast, Autocracy Now, which deals with the lives of famous historical dictators. You can find some of their episodes on our feed, or the show itself at 

Jun 1, 2018

Last episode on the Future of Work, I described the problem – artificial intelligence is going to potentially make a lot of people unemployed in the near-term future; and the range of opinions, you can kind of pick and mix from:

It’s the robot job apocalypse! Society as we know it will soon be over!

It’s okay, we’ll just give everyone a Universal Basic Income and they can all start small businesses or learn to code or something.

It’s okay, we’ll just retrain everyone so that all the coal miners are making solar panels now.

It’s okay, AI won’t replace that many people and has been greatly exaggerated; just because a job has the potential to be automated, doesn’t mean that it will be automated. Instead AI will become a tool that enhances our productivity

It’s okay, AI will replace a lot of people but we’ll just come up with new jobs. No one is smashing spinning jennys nowadays and there aren’t thousands of unemployed loom-weavers on the streets of Manchester because everyone moved on, got new demands, and now they all work in PR.

As for me – I fall in the middle of the two extreme viewpoints, the “we’re all doomed” and “it’s fine” viewpoints. Nice and convenient, you might say. Let me explain in a rant. 

I imagine a lot of people listening are going to disagree with me. I'm not always right! Send your *constructive* criticism to , the contact page, or get in touch with us via Twitter @physicspod 

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