Public and Non-academic Work

On this page are links to my public and other non-academic work. The show a range of subjects I’ve covered, including: time; time travel; memory (and false memory); perception and illusion; art; being present; artificial and alien intelligence; drones; simulations; chance and free will.

These talks are mainly from 2014 (but there are a few from before that). They include talks, podcasts, and articles. Presentations are both singular and collaborative, in locations such as Dublin, Waterford, Cork, and Sheffield.

February 2018. ‘AI and Apocalypse’. Podcast. Interview by Leila Johnston as part of her artist residency at the Centre for Millenarian Studies (CenSAMM).

September 2017.Remembering it Well: Understanding History and the Importance of False Memory“. Public talk for Culture Night. Dungarvan Library. Dungarvan. Co. Waterford

July 2017. “Introduction to the film Primer“. Dark Skies’ science fiction series at the Irish Film Institute.

April 2017. Art, Science and The Truth“. Interdisciplinary public panel discussion, Upper Chapel (Sheffield),part of ‘Site Sessions’ for Site Gallery, Sheffield

Audio (mp3 on Dropbox):

  • Taken from organiser Leila Johnston’s site. Leila introduces, then, at about 9mins, I begin talking.
  • Please excuse the audio quality (it took place offsite in a church, and there were recording issues.)

Event theme: Who has the claim to what’s true, in these rational times? To what extent are art, science and belief “branches of the same tree” as Albert Einstein once said, and what happens when some of those branches begin to crack? Join us in the revered surroundings of Sheffield’s Upper Chapel on the 27 April to discuss these questions and more, with our expert panel from the worlds of art, science and ideas.

2017 (April 18). What Should We Forget? Memory and the philosophy of time“. Public philosophy talk, Blackrock Library, Dublin

Description: How valuable is memory? Some remembered events seem to only harm us, with no further value. Is there any value in holding on to them? Perhaps we cannot forget them. But, if we could, should we?

(Note: the link refers to me as a Professor. I am not. I have not achieved that status yet, and am only a doctor)

March 2017. Is Time Travel Possible?’ Big Ideas. Public talks series, Philosophy, Trinity College Dublin. Programme for that year (PDF)

December 2016. ’20 Century philosophers, David Chalmers’. Great Philosophers. Public talks series, Philosophy, Trinity College Dublin. Programme for that year (PDF)

2014 – 2017. Hack Circus (podcast and magazine)

Hackcircus magazine is, by its own description,  ‘about fantasy technology and everyday magic. […] an artistic collective dedicated to celebrating the entertaining and engaging side of inventive thought, whether that manifests physically with wires and batteries, or conceptually in artistic or philosophical ways’. I contributed several articles to the published magazine, as well as appeared on the podcast. 

I talk about such things seeing distant stars, what made me a philosopher, and time travel.

2017. #12. ‘Death of A Cartoon’ — Death, simulation theory, and dreaming

2016. #10. ‘Clocking Off’ — Why measure our experience against the standard clock? (Also: aliens and call-centres)

2015. # 9. ‘Losing Your Head’ — Personal identity over time, severe accidents, mad scientists, and cloning

2015. #7. ‘Free Will in a Chancy World’ — Whether or not missing your bus and having to trudge through the rain was ‘meant to be’

2015. #5. ‘What Is Under Us?’ — Which way is down? Is the sun ever below us?

2014. #4. ‘They Might Be Aliens’ — If we met intelligent aliens, would we be justified in believing it?

2012 – 2016. For/With Artist Grace Weir 

March 2016. ‘Is Living in the ‘Now’ Such a Good Idea?

Interview with Joe Humphreys for his ‘ ‘Unthinkable’ column in The Irish Times

December 2015. Opening night talk. For artist Sinead MacDonald.

Sinead’s exhibition, Draiocht Art Centre, Blanchardstown

2014. Commentary track on ‘Q’ episode of anthology horror film ‘ABCs of Death 2‘ (director: Rodney Ascher).

Over a short horror film, I discuss the mind-body problem and, in particular, whether or not I have the same mind if it gets transplanted into a different body (e.g., in …a gorilla).

2010. ‘Mirrors and Memory’. Talk on a selected piece from the exhibition running there at the time. Glucksman Art Gallery, Cork.