on the Question of Being Human
What does it mean to be human?
Thought Experiments is a festival of original plays, created by teaming five playwrights and five scientists, who together produce short works examining that question. Each evening includes plays, followed by a scientist-led conversation, that explores the questions and issues raised in the plays.
The theme for 2013 is Robots and Artificial Intelligence. Our question for 2013 is: “How might current and possible future innovations in the fields of robotics and artificial intelligence change what it means to be human?” The work of each team will provide a unique perspective on this question.
The plays, commentaries by the scientists and discussions with the audience will make up a multifaceted consideration of the human consequences of the technological innovations that will soon be part of our lives.
Following each Festival we will publish a research report of our findings, with scripts, commentaries from the scientists, pictures from the production and a summary of the discussions.
Themes for the First Five Years:
Year 1: Robots and Artificial Intelligence
Year 2: Prosthetics (personal augmentation)
Year 3: Genetics (gene therapy, gene selection, self-modification…)
Year 4: Augmented Reality (perception, new senses…)
Year 5: Cities (smart cities, virtual communities…)