Author Archives: John Horgan

Quantum Mechanics, Free Will and the Game of Life

Some thoughts triggered by the death of the mathematician John Conway

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Premature Freak-Outs about Techno-Enhancement

Debates about whether to “improve” our mind and body often exaggerate the feasibility of doing so

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Will Artificial Intelligence Ever Live Up to Its Hype?

Replication problems plague the field of AI, and the goal of general intelligence remains as elusive as ever

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Thanksgiving and the Myth of Native American “Savages”

Prominent scientists exaggerate the violence of Native Americans, whom European invaders ravaged.

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Has the Drug-Based Approach to Mental Illness Failed?

Journalist Robert Whitaker is more concerned than ever that psychiatric medications do more harm than good

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

A Liberal East Coast Science Writer Talks to a Pro-Trump Texan Strength Coach about COVID-19

A weight-lifting guru, author and podcaster calls the U.S. response to the pandemic an “exercise in hysteria” that might do more harm than good

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

The Coronavirus and Right-Wing Postmodernism

Does right-wing skepticism toward the coronavirus have anything to do with the postmodern philosophy of Thomas Kuhn?

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Pluralism: Beyond the One and Only Truth

Some big questions, such as how matter makes mind and what quantum mechanics means, may not have a single, definitive answer

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

The Delusion of Scientific Omniscience

As time passes, the claim that science can comprehend everything looks increasingly nutty

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

We Should All Be Science Critics

A Harvard scholar says viewing science and technology with a critical eye can make the world a better place

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Cancer Medicine Is Failing Us

Our aggressive, expensive approach to cancer is doing more harm than good

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Was Thomas Kuhn Evil?

Filmmaker Errol Morris, once Kuhn’s grad student, accuses him of being a bad philosopher and bad person.

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

The Great Hunger and the Randomness of the World

A science journalist walking through Lower Manhattan ponders the meaning of the Irish Hunger Memorial

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

The Deep Roots of Fake News

A new history of the U.S. traces mass media’s destabilizing effects back to the nation’s birth

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Cypher’s Choice: Painful Reality or Pleasant Delusion?

The care of people with dementia poses an agonizing philosophical dilemma

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Can Art Solve the Hard Problem?

A play dramatizes the deepest of all mysteries, the mind–body problem

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Noam Chomsky Calls Trump and Republican Allies “Criminally Insane”

The great linguist and political critic remains hopeful that we can overcome global warming and other threats

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Philosophy Has Made Plenty of Progress

Philosopher Tim Maudlin sees advances in free will, morality and the meaning of quantum mechanics

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Beauty Does Not Equal Truth, in Physics or Elsewhere

Truth can be ugly, and beauty can lead us astray

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Why the Mind–Body Problem Can’t Have a Single, Objective Solution

We cannot escape our subjectivity when we try to solve the riddle of ourselves

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Oneness, Weirdness and Alienation

A new book about psychedelics conveys their subversive, estranging weirdness

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Mind–Body Problems: My Meta-Solution to the Mystery of Who We Really Are

The author of a new book about consciousness, free will and the meaning of life conducts a testy interview with himself

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

The Paradox of Karl Popper

The great philosopher, renowned for his ferocious attacks on scientific and political dogmatism, could be quite dogmatic

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Why STEM Students Need Humanities Courses

The more science and technology dominate our culture, the more we need the humanities

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Buddhism, the Good and the Bad

A science writer, in the afterglow of a one-week silent retreat, still has lingering doubts about Buddhism

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

A Buddhism Critic Goes on a Silent Buddhist Retreat

Something weird happens to a skeptical science writer during a week of meditation, chanting and skygazing

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

David Bohm, Quantum Mechanics and Enlightenment

The visionary physicist, whose ideas remain influential, sought spiritual as well as scientific illumination

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Yes, Make Psychedelics Legally Available, but Don’t Forget the Risks

Psychedelics have psychological and spiritual benefits, as a new best seller claims, but they’re far from a panacea

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

Why Does Jim Holt Exist?

A connoisseur of science, math and philosophy takes on the really big questions

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |

How Physics Lost Its Way

Physicist Sabine Hossenfelder claims desire for beauty and other subjective biases have led physicists astray

— Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Continue reading

Posted in STEM News |