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Big Picture Science

Are you ready to defer all your per­son­al deci­sion-mak­ing to machines? Polls show that most Amer­i­cans are uneasy about the unchecked growth of arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence. The pos­si­ble mis­use of genet­ic engi­neer­ing also makes us anx­ious. We all have a stake in the respon­si­ble devel­op­ment of sci­ence and tech­nol­o­gy, but for­tu­nate­ly, sci­ence fic­tion films can help.

The movies Ex Machi­na and Juras­sic Park sug­gest where A.I. and unfet­tered gene-tin­ker­ing could lead. But even less pop­u­lar sci-fi movies can help us imag­ine unset­tling sce­nar­ios regard­ing over-pop­u­la­tion, smart drugs, and human cloning. 

And not all tales are grim. The 1951 film, The Man in the White Suit, weaves a humor­ous sto­ry of mate­ri­als sci­ence run amok. 

So, grab a bowl of pop­corn and join us in con­tem­plat­ing the future of human­i­ty as Hol­ly­wood sees it!


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