Why Do We Want to Find Aliens?

Humanity’s Fascination with ‘Little Green Men’ Dares Us to Imagine What’s Out There

The most memorable taxi ride of my life occurred when I stepped into a cab driven by a man named John, back in 2016. We fell into a conversation about our lines of work. He told me how much he enjoyed his job. As a taxi driver, he got to meet the wonderful menagerie of humankind and find out their life stories—and be paid to do it, no less. And I described my day as a working astrobiologist: how I try to use instruments to detect the signs of living …

Why We Should Fear Emotionally Manipulative Robots

Artificial Intelligence Is Learning How to Exploit Human Psychology for Profit

“Keep going straight here!”

“Err, that’s not what the app is telling me to do.”

“Yes, but it’s faster this way. The app is taking you to the beltway. Traffic is terrible …