James Lovelock at 100: The creator of Gaia idea on humanity’s future

The influential scientist talks about his Earth-as-superorganism speculation and predicts a brand new period for humanity, unfettered by the constraints of our our bodies


24 July 2019

Daybreak of a brand new age: James Lovelock at 100

Photographed by David Inventory for New Scientist

JAMES LOVELOCK turns 100 this July. Some of the influential scientists of our time, he labored for the British authorities through the second world warfare and later for NASA on the Mars Viking mission. It was then that he was impressed to develop the Gaia speculation, the concept Earth is a massively interconnected, self-regulating system. His new e-book, Novacene: The approaching age of hyperintelligence, argues that the Anthropocene period of human affect over the planet is coming to an finish and that an age of superintelligent beings is about to start.

Thanks for the espresso and, er, the saucer of ice…

That’s to make it drinkable. A bit of ice cools the espresso 80 occasions extra successfully than the equal quantity of water at 0 levels.

Ever the scientist. How did your curiosity in science and problem-solving begin?

Properly, my dad was a hunter-gatherer and that’s the place I realized my ecology. He used to take me for walks and knew the nesting locations of all of the birds, and the names and houses of all of the animals, crops and bugs. He gave me coaching within the atmosphere.

A British hunter-gatherer? You aren’t that outdated! However did that coaching make you an environmentalist?

No! That instantly makes me consider a city-based tutorial kind of one who has robust views on how issues should be. I’m a way more laid-back one who simply takes the world because it comes. I get an intense feeling of happiness from the atmosphere.

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