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Disrupt Yourself Podcast with Whitney Johnson

Feb 23, 2024

When we talk about robots, machines, artificial intelligence, it’s usually within the context of something theorists call the singularity. That’s the moment when AI figures out how to upgrade itself, and leaves us in the dust. After all, it can learn a library in an instant – the AI doesn’t need to stop for a snack and a nap. 

In the world of the Terminator, it took Skynet a single day to become self-aware, destroy most of human life, and then send Arnold back in time to make sure no one could stop it.

But in the end, The Terminator is one person’s vision of the future – a vision that’s also designed to sell well at the box office. Isn’t it just as possible to write a different version?

Our guest today is spending his time doing just that. Paul Allen, the co-founder and former CEO of, is asking instead – what if we saw AI as an ally, not an arms race? With his new venture, Soar, Paul is writing a different story, one where the robots aren’t sent back in time to strip away our humanity, but rather – they exemplify everything that’s unique about being human.