David Edwards: "Creating Things that Matter" | Talks at Google
I'm really delighted to be here and I hope we can have, a dialogue, after. I speak a little bit about my book. So, yeah far from scaring you I think, I want to reassure you initially, that creating. Is. Really something, that we all do every day of our lives it's one of the most fundamental biological. Processes. And to frame that it's. Pretty. Clear that there's. Hardly, a condition, in the course of your day that, you encounter, that's fully, predictable, or predicted, you encounter, it and you act. In, a fundamentally. Creative, way you go right or you go left and that may be a trivial. Creative, act or a consequential. Trivia. Creative. Act but, in any case it matters to you in the moment that you do it or you wouldn't have done it, occasionally. Those creative acts lead to creative. Things, and those, created. Things may be anything from a well-articulated, sentence. To a pirouettes to a book and those, things matter to you when you create them or you wouldn't create them now. It, has turned, out to be in our interest to create not only for, ourselves, things. That matter. But, also things that matter for, many, of those around, us the clan and the well-being of the clan tends. To correlate with our own personal, well-being and therefore over time our biology. Has, pushed us to think about creating things that matter not just to ourselves, right. Now but, to others and for, a fairly. Long period of time and so if you look over the course of human history had created, things whether it's an equation or, a. Wheel, these, things have tended, to involve. Of course collaboration. Discussion. Kind, of figuring out what matters to the clan and pooling. Of resources and, and when we finally made something we've tended to make it to, last not just for the moment when we created it for some relatively, long period of time and therefore villages, and pyramids, and shoes. Attended. For most of history to last quite. A long time, fast forward, to where, we are today and. We're. In a moment that, whay is the pinnacle, achievement of, human creativity, and if, you read Steven, Pinker's recent, book clearly. By. Most indicators, the. Human condition is better off today by human creativity, than it ever has been but, one of the uniquenesses. Of our moment is that the created, things that. Surround us are remarkably. Short-lived. And. The reason for that is. Multiple. Firstly, among. The things that we have a limited supply of is time and therefore. In all. Of history when we have it and, have had a chance to create something, tomorrow. Versus, creating something that matters to us the day after tomorrow we sort of focus on tomorrow, time. Matters and over. The last 300, years and maybe especially over the last thirty years the power of science and technology has made it possible to create things of mass, utility. Really. Rapidly, and it's led to this increasing. Focus on creating, things over a really short period of time and that's skewed, our, perception.
Of What creativity, is and really led me to the writing of this book it's also created, of course this situation. Highlighted. By the United Nations and their identification, of the 17. Sustainable development goals of a, world that is in risk. Of. No. Sustainability. And therefore many today. Are focusing. Whether it's on feeding. The planet or saving. Life in the sea or, preserving. The environment in some way on. Creating. Over a long period, of time, now. I'd like to just. Talk for a little bit about. Creating. And this concept. Of learning, if. You think about the sort. Of canonical. Creator. Environment. You probably think about a scientific, lab which is indeed. Responsible. For much of the created, world. Around. Us today and if you think. About what happens in a scientific. Lab you probably have in mind the scientific, method and indeed the scientific method is one of the things that goes on in a science lab we tend to focus on phenomena, whose laws we understand. We. Frame those phenomena. And conditions, that are really, well specified. And we. Apply the scientific, method, we observe and introduce, and we make discoveries. However. In, pioneering. Work in. Science. And engineering and other domains. We tend to have either not, perfect, understanding of the phenomena, nor perfect, understanding of the conditions that frame them and as much, as analysis. And deduction matters. In the science lab actually. Intuition. And imagination matters. Too and therefore the scientific, process. And science labs or in engineering labs or in labs generally, is a combination. Of the classical. Scientific, method and what, I call, an artistic, method it blends, this induction, deduction. Comfort. With uncertainty, and ability, to frame a problem, and move on into. A single, process, that over the last 10 or 15 years I've been talking about as an art science, process, now if you take the metaphor. The science lab and you apply, it to your lives, here at Google or to your personal, lives this. Balance. Of art and science, still, holds, and there's probably a lot more art that, is involved, in science and you can take any. Example an example for, example of losing your watch you, make a hypothesis, that your watch is under your bed you, then test your hypothesis, by looking for your watch you make a discovery and so on and so forth and that's generally how we. Encounter. Opportunity. And need. In our lives and by this balance, of art. And science now in. My. Book I talk about. This. Notion, of. An. Aesthetic, work or aesthetics, and a. Lot, of thinking over the last century, particularly, around. Aesthetics. As being. Closely. Coupled with a kind. Of mindful, way of living and if you look at the most mindful, of experiments. The works that, come from those whether it's a scientific article or a relief, can. Be thought of as aesthetic, works and I'd like to talk about aesthetics. Work aesthetic. Works just for a little bit if, you look over the course of history at, things. That we've made through. Experimental. Processes, whether they're. Books. Or, plays. Or. Reliefs. They, have generally, invited. A reaction. From the, public of, observation. And. Learning, and. That. Has led, to how we structure, our universities, our museums, and even, our companies, and stores, if. You look, however at the last 30. Years or, so at. Cultural, works and, works. Of Technology and Dean as, you. Produce here at Google they, invite a very different, kind of public experience, this here. Is an image from oleifera. Liasons, 2004. Weather. Project, at the Tate Modern a. Kind. Of Sun was, created. In the. Tate. Modern and, people. Were invited to. Observe. And if nobody, had any idea how people would observe and actually ended up laying on their backs and they end up making formations, there's a whole story about how the weather project, was lived. But they became part, of the. The. The cultural, work and that's indeed. What's happened, in technology. In. Media, if you look at something like a. Smartphone. As. Which. Invites me to engage and my engagement changes. The phone in a certain way just as Google is changed, by me using Google and so there's this increasing. Participation. Of the public, with. The Creator and we're all kind of creating, together. And I say all of that just to say that the, notion, of learning. Indeed. Even of commerce as being, one of a producer. And a. Consumer, is. Going. Away and it. Actually, has, a radical, impact. On how we think about learning. At Harvard, University, and ultimately. Probably. Doing business and so I've been focused, over the last 15 years on the. Synonymous. Nature of, learning. About. Tomorrow and creating. Tomorrow and particularly. Focusing, on among. Other things little kids my book begins with, a story about a little kid if. You think about the ultimate pioneers, they, are little kids right there encountering, conditions, that are radically, new and they, are learning.
An Amazing, rate and if. All. Is, particularly. Supportive they're having fun and so this is something that I come back to very frequently being motivated not for a commercial purpose or, for making, a name for themselves but they're just sort of fascinated. Super, curious and and. They're learning now, particularly. In my book I focus, on pioneers, pioneering, creators, who are creating, of a very long period of time it. Actually in quite, risky and uncertain, conditions. And I, focus, on the. Emotive. And cognitive, dimensions that. Lead. To not. Only successful. Pioneering, creating, but, also a, deep, pleasure, and to, give you just a little, insight. One of the creators. Who I spent. Time with David Doubilet who's, one. Of the great, marine, photographers. Of our time and. Invented. The split. Screen. Or, the split lens for. Photographing. Above and below water and, I was talking to David about the quality's, important. In a buddy in, diving, deep into the ocean and just to point out as I'll mention. More, here, in the last part of my talk when. We pioneer, we, tend to pioneer, best not alone and, now we're not clearly not in a village but we tend to have a team, a buddy and who's. Thinking, of our, interest. And we are thinking of her. Interest, and that tends, to maximize. Optimize. Our survival, and it's obviously, true in diving, in the ocean I asked David what are the qualities, that matter most unique said well the second most important Polly which it was interesting that, he started with that was that they'd be kind and, it's kind of nothing worse than diving with, somebody and kind of risking your life with somebody who's just fundamentally, not kind and so. I said well what's the first most important, quality. And he said well they need to be passionately, curious and so obviously, at, a frontier. If you're not, waking. Up and motivated to, explore. That nobody will be right so this passionate, curiosity empathy. These are the kinds of emotive. And cognitive, inventions that I focus. On in, the book and, I look at creators, like Ferran adrià the chef of, al Bulli which, closed down in 2011, arguably, the greatest chef. Living today and I, look at their creative, process from. Great. Scientists living, today to great inventors, to. Artists and I show. That all of them follow a very similar, process. They. May all. Do, really well economically they, may create, amazingly. Successful companies. Or, amazingly. Successful. Music. Theater, and. Yet what's. Driving them is, something. Else actually and it's related, to the reward. System. Of, our brains and you, are all probably aware but just to remind, you there are three fundamental processes. That. Motivate. Us through the reward system one is a wanting. Process, one, is a reinforcement. Learning process. And one is a liking, process, and an illustration. Of this, very simply, would be, Anna. Karenina, let's say I'm, told. To for my class or for some other reason want, to read Leo.
Tolstoy's Anna Karenina there's, some, pleasure. Actually and wanting, anything. And, particularly wanting to read Anna Karenina I read it so there's this reinforcement, learning I get. To like Anna. Karenina and finally having finished the book I really like it so much that I talked to my wife about Anna Karenina and we exchanged, ideas and, when I go to read my next book of Leo Tolstoy war and peace I have. Been informed through that conversation with my wife and that kind of cycle, of how we learn. Is really the cycle of how we create and so in Ferran Adria case from, the AI da ting to, the experimenting. To the serving, of a. An, amazing. Dish this. Cycle, in. All of the creative lives that I described. Is. Fundamental. Not only to learning, the kinds of dimensions that I mentioned, the empathy, the passion and others that I'll mention in just a minute but. Also a creating, value, that they bring to the public there's, a. Conversation. Much. Like what happens with the internet and, and. Everyone. Learns and then they go back and not, only is. Formative. For the creative, thing this, new thing, that the world has never seen before which goes through the cycle, of communication. With the public but it's actually deeply, pleasurable. So. In my book I highlight, these. Emotive. And cognitive, dimensions which are pretty, contrasted. To the, emotive. And cognitive, dimensions that we tend. To celebrate, in culture, and and, maybe. Inculcate. In our. Businesses, and our business schools and so it's clear that in, the. Success, of a Google or the success of even. My, book. Both. Sets, of qualities, are important, there are times when we're at battle. And. There are times where we are, discovering. And the qualities. That lead to the. Successful, lawyer are pretty. Defiantly. Not the qualities, that lead to this successful, pioneer and one of the challenges, in, writing. A book or. Bringing. Great value, to to. The world in a company like Google is how, do you balance these two in, my book I am focusing, mostly on this. Patch. Of blue. And and in. Red and. This the. The cycle, of creating, that allows for these qualities, to be learned, and we learned and and, ultimately shared now if I ask you what. Are the qualities and the neighbors you'd like to live with I can imagine, which sorry. I hoped I can imagine which set, of qualities they, are and one, of the points in my book is while we, are. Interested. Today obviously in, creating, things that matter to many over a very long period of time this. Future, that we're all looking for is really. Starts. Today right, and it's in it's as much as it relates, to this thing that you're mattering it makes, it, relates even, more fundamentally, to how you. Create, this thing right and so this. Way. Of living. Passionate. Curiosity empathy. Intuition, and innocence of humility all of which I described, more fundamentally. In the. Book is is. Is, critical, I believe, to introduce, into our schools and our companies and. Into into culture and indeed, in my, book I talk, about how that's happening, so the. Last part. Of my book. Emphasizes. The grassroots, creator movement which I identify. As beginning around the time of the first tweet, the first makerfaire make, magazine, over. The last 10-15, years as you've thrived here at Google the, world has radically, changed, as we all know but one of the things that's most striking, to me is that, over his short period of time much. Of the planet has now placed, itself in a position of creatively, expressing. Itself in, a way that never happened before and expressing, itself in ways that endure. Much. Of this creation may be viewed. By many, as trivial, or. Not interesting, or even, profoundly. Irritating, but, it is. Fundamentally. And in many cases, not to make money not to make a name although that happens but, to express. Oneself and we, express. An experience. That one has had that. Aesthetic, creation, is I think fundamental. To creating, the world that. We all wish, to live in and indeed it's starting to re. Structure. How we, how. We how, we run, companies, the, kinds of environments that companies, are thriving in and it's, quite, reflected, by your own your, own campus and so I've been very, involved I've opened a restaurant in in, Cambridge. And have my students making things and so I'm really interested in this, grassroots, creative, movement and one of the things that fascinates, me and I talk about in the book is that. We're. Seeing this self, association. That creators. Grassroots. Creators. Make. And these. Happen online obviously but they also happen, in in. Physical. Environments. And these, could be Habitat, for Humanity. Kinds of gatherings or they could be weekend, food, making gatherings. These could happen in classes, lots of maker activities but these are often.
Self. Associations. Of creators. Who want, to create together maybe, write fiction together, and they. Come together really. Very. Frequently for the pleasure of creating. Together, and they, learn as I write in the book these same. Qualities. These, aesthetic dimensions of creating, that, are, not. Only fundamental to creating over, a very long period of time but, having fun and and. Personal. Self-satisfaction. So, I'm going to end really, quickly, here by, talking. About a. Two. Innovation. Activities. That I've been very engaged with over these 15 years as I've been learning. Myself, and creating environments that, foster. This. Kind of learning and, one. Of these relates. To my work in Africa in the early, 2000s, I was one of the first Grand. Challenge Gates, grant challenged grantees, and was focused on inhaled. Vaccines, and antibiotics for, tuberculosis, instead, of a not-for-profit in South Africa, I became struck, by. The middle 2000s, there was relative, affluence coming, to Africa by these mounds of trash that were growing, outside of the cities and this, sort of importation, of diseases that we thought until then were fundamentally. Developed world diseases like cardiac and. Depression. And other kinds of illnesses. And. Shifted. My work for many other reasons to, food, and to to. Ultimately. For. A significant, amount, of my creative, time to food, packaging, and I came up with this idea that well we really should make. Packaging. Like nature makes packaging, and the ultimate water bottle is the coconut and and. So I began to reflect on how that would be done now this was. For. Many years, curated. In a cultural. Context, where we did an exhibition, in Paris at the level of 12 this cultural, center that I opened in 2007, and. Invited. The public to, eat. Water, bottles, and for. Two. Or three years this. Kind. Of wiki food was. A. Cultural. Experiment, and we set up an underground. Restaurant. In in Paris and this. Led to a company, eventually, and and two products that. Sell. Particular, on the East Coast and ultimately. To this product of which I have I'm here which you can now make any fruit in the, form or any food really in the form of grapes, and.
In. The product that is now launched and you can taste or fruit, kids are not eating fruit anymore because the. Trend is going down because fruit gets. Sort of complicated, to eat. And parents are concerned about skins but you can remake, fruit, with. These edible, packages. If you will or skins and, this, work now through. A. Number. Of collaborators, is is moving, to a. An. Effort in Africa, particularly Sierra Leone to, develop, local, food forms that. Are environmentally. Sustainable. And, that are, highly. Vectorized. By by micronutrients. So what began as an idea in Africa moved, through a cultural environment for a time, that might have been in a indeterminate. Certainly was, in. The process, became, a company venture-backed, company, and is now coming back to Africa all through a process, that kind of needed have this. Open-ended, and. Driving. Force that was other than pure commercial, interest now I'll just finish by saying that, I've also been interested since my first company related. Inhaled, insulin and, delivering. Health, and wellness through the air and have. Become fascinated since. The Nobel Prize in 2004, with the. Revolution. Happening in in. In mow factory biology, the, largest subclass. Of the human genome is every fact, we receptor, subclass olfactory, receptors, imagine just in your nose there throughout your body and so. There's this amazing conversation that's, going on since awe really inside, of you that, we understand, now is fundamentally, related to olfaction and, clearly. Plays, a major role in metabolic. Health and neurologic. Health and getting. That right. We. Believe is, partly. Related to. Writing. Some, of the metabolic. And neurological dysfunction. That's, happened here over the last 30, or 40 years and so we've developed this platform for a digitizing, sent and begun. To work and. Collaborate. With Questlove, and thinking about synesthesia, and. And, how. These, kinds of experiences. Can. Improve. Well-being, and. Experience. With even. Of music. And. Ultimately, come into work environments, looking how sensory, design can improve the, workspace and finally, we're. Coming, out with our first real. Mass-market. Product here this year which. I can share with you which is a way, of, creating. Flavor images, either. Autonomously. Or over, any food you can kind, of color any food with a flavor of, chocolate. Or, popcorn. Or a, rum, and and. Then in consuming, that food your, brain tells you that that's just what I've had and so it's a really interesting way, to address, some of the food. Addiction, issues. That we're dealing with today so once again this. Project. Began, a blue. Sky actually, with some of my students developed. In a cultural, environment for a long period of time and and, finally through. Commercial, forces. Is moving into the marketplace so. I'd, like to just end by saying that these. Sorts. Of cultural lab environments. That began. To show up in Europe in the middle. 2000s, are now increasingly. Showing. Up in companies. Like yours I view what, I know of Google and in, part as a culture lab. We moved the, lab over to a cultural, lab to Cambridge in 2014. And began the world frontiers, for them and the. World frontiers forum is a gathering of leaders, from around the world we. Bring them to experience, 15 frontiers, of tomorrow from contemporary art to biology. Significant. Collaboration with the United Nations and we try to hatch, every year a project, that can scale rapidly, in the developing world and. Address one or more of, the sustainable, development challenges, and so this. Gets back to this notion of how do you capture, the energy of, the grassroots, creative movement and and, help, guide, it towards.
Sustainability. Of the human condition in the, long time that has always been our. Biological. Self-interest. Thank. You very much. And. By sure how we do questions and answers but I'd really love, to talk with you I'm curious what, your thoughts are if you've looked at this difference, in the, creative space between people who are kind of like the visionaries, and have this idea like oh this product were really cool and then they assemble a team of people to get that done versus. The creatives, who are more on the side of like. The actual people who are building. Their products and creating the technologies, and kind of like what the different qualities of, people. Yeah. That's the equation yeah. Absolutely and, you, know if. You, I find. Always helpful too so, the question for those of you who. Didn't hear, that clearly is. How. Do you. Combine. The the, visionary, with the the. Creatives, who are bringing vision, to to. Practice, and I. Think implicitly. You're suggesting that as I kind of did that they're really different qualities, that lead to success here, and success here and often those cultures, don't really mix very well and. Of. Course this has been true throughout history and, and. I think, today in the, highly. Specialized, world that we live in and. The, way we educate and. Organize. Ourselves the. Barriers. Between those two. Sort. Of cultures, are greater. I. Think. That, very. Successful. Cultural. Innovation. Environments, and I view. Silicon. Valley would be an example of such, an environment Boston, may be for biotech. New York may be for Broadway theater they tend, to create. Sub. Cultures. And and. I think that generally, you have a learning, culture where. Visionaries, often sort of thrive you, have an experimental. Culture where people can fail and, get paid for it actually, and you, have an environment, where people produce and, that, any. Of those are sort of relatively. Easy and you find them in, many many places it's, very hard however to create a culture, where ideas, and people move between them and where, there's, a trust, that. Allows that to happen and that, is the, sort. Of pixie, dust of, creating. Tomorrow and again it's something that I talk more about in the book I think that. To. Be a little bit more concrete. Partly. Because of the nature, of the world that we are living in today, and.
And, And and and and frankly the. Risky. Nature of the world we're living in today probably, has a lot more to do with our, evolutionary. Conditions, than the, world of big offices, and kind of sure paychecks. We. Can. Sort. Of. Thrive, less well with the luxury of considering. Myself a pure visionary, or, considering. Myself a pure applied. Kind, of, a. Creator. And. We're needing all. Of us to. Tolerate. And thrive. In the conditions, of pioneering. Vision. As. Well as. Being. Gauged in the. Complexity. Of sharing. That vision with others and learning, from. Others. So. The ivory tower. Is is, under. I, don't know if it ever really existed, but it's very hard to rationalize. Today. And and. I think honestly it's very hard to be a visionary and not, be, engaged. In, what, you're describing, as that creative, sort. Of exchange with the public it, used to be we understood, better what people, needed and, I, think increasingly we, need everyone, to sort of tell us that so I'm hopeful, that those two, cultures. Are coming together and, and, in any case I think environments. Need to do a lot to just help both. Sides. Communicate. Thank. You I. Am. So. I agree with you out there there's a lot of exciting empowerment. And personal, creativity, but. At the same time I see increasing. Trends towards short. Term rewarding, short term gains. Shorter, and shorter products, like product, life cycles, which is where we get these piles of trash and so on so how. Does how do we start to shift. Towards. Our culture valuing, longer, term contributions. Yeah that, seems like a real challenge to this yeah, absolutely and. As was true in the Italian. Renaissance any, sort, of Renaissance period. On, the one hand we like to talk about the. Heroes, of the Renaissance but it was a very tough time to be living things. Everything was gonna cave and all of the. Institutions. We're pointing us in the wrong direction and, that's. Even more profoundly, true today and so, it's hard to look at. Anything. Almost, in the media, and. If. Nowhere, else and not realize, that. The. The. Qualities, that I'm highlighting, and. That I believe we're really critical, to creating a world we all want to live in are, not. Very. Frequently, the qualities that are being propagated in our institutions, I think one of the things that I'm saying. For. Sure is that those. Qualities, of short-termism, are not sustainable, right. And so I'm, personally. Less interested. In spending my energy and figuring out how do I kind of wake people up too and, just there. Are a lot of people who are awakened. And and, I think that in. The spirit, of the Pioneer, I, prefer, to be with those pioneers. Making, tomorrow and just assuming, that the those, who you know the unsustainable. Activity, here will will stop at some point I had. A similar question to gold on on his about short-term thinking, long term thinking we have a lot of many. Institutions, including. The government in the u.s. ray elect. Officials, every, four years, companies. Like Google you have annual. Quarterly, performance reviews. And things like that you have to show some progress. Towards a goal how. Do you bridge that gap between sort. Of needing, to show some. Short-term progress, short term yet have goals in, the, long term kind of solving, long term problems, like, asteroids. Hitting her yeah. 20 years from now yeah 50 years so. The. Great, question and I. As. I also. Write, about in the book and. Maybe, did not emphasize enough here I am. NOT. I don't, believe personally that, the value. That a Harvard University brings to the world or a Google brings to the world both. Institutions. Being under, extreme. Pressure to. Deliver, value today, and. This, semester this quarter, and. Both, however. Being, highly. Invested in. The. Future of 30 years from now so. There's a. The. Big question, which is what, you've just asked, well how do you balance. Fact that we do have students, showing up this semester they really do need to take a class and, maybe it's true that we need to rethink education completely. But meanwhile you've got students you got to teach today and you can't tell them oh we're figuring it out right and so that's kind of the issue. So. I think, what. De. Facto is happening, and, it explains my role. At Harvard University, and, and, I, think, from. My understanding of, Google and and, and a, lot of the sort, of California, Tech. Technologies. Seen. Sort. Of enlightened leadership that, is giving. Space to whether. It's giving all of you time to, think out of the box or. Letting. You. Sort. Of create. A company, and move off campus and, sort of creating, these sort of experimental, sandboxes. Where. We. Can dream about the future and. That itself, is relatively, simple what's difficult actually, is how to create that sandbox, where not only do, you go off and sort. Of think long term but.
What You, do matters to me back here so that's the bigger issue is how do I stay in touch and not lose sight of you why how do I keep carrying in that is really an enlightened leadership issue and I I think getting back to this point that, I tried to make earlier. The. Good thing about, where. We're at right now is that it's so urgent, that we. Pay. Attention to, the longer-term. Future, that, we kind of just can't afford to send. You off to, think about the future and then forget about you, and so I think that there's a clearly. An awakening, happening. Today that, I'm hopeful, will, lead to more of that but it is a complicated. Balance. That. I think all of us in a way strike, in our lives and if you think back childhood. I have kids now 15 17 and 19 and they I've. Learned so much from them and I still do. But. If you think back on. The. Qualities. That made you. Survive. Adolescence. Where. You needed at the same time to be profound you. The, moment, and local, and in the same time you typically I'm gonna call it and I gotta kind. Of think and you were in this sort of that's. That's. Really what life, is about right, and I think that there's been too much now for too long where we kind of assumed, that well that and it and then you kind of and, then this it's, it's it's we need to balance all those things for sure I just. Want to hear your thoughts on AI, in, creativity, I think with artificial. Intelligence today we tend to kind of see more, and more of things that we are already thinking and people, that other, people are thinking but, how. You go outside the box and how you you've, see, AI, Linda. Yeah well, again. The question of it this is another big big question, and and I think. My innocence, will help simplify. The answer. So. Let. Me just first say that one of the things. I write about in the book and that I, experienced. Every semester with my students is this first day where I'm. You. Know presenting, the concept of the class you get to create something that matters and and and I in. One year and I write about this the book a student, asked this question and this gets asked, every year in one form. Or another what, if I don't have an idea you, know and. That. The compliment to that is the student who's an Indian, and the next secret second but I found it online like this. Is like out there already and my, point to, both. Of those, young. People is is. The same that. If. You. We're. Getting to artificial intelligence I just want to finish this little, thought that. I think.
What, Makes you matter. No. More. Than me in a certain way is that you own, your. Experience. And I don't and that, experience tells you something about now. And. About the needs and opportunities now, that only, you know and if from that you, observe. You're mindful enough that got a didn't notice and you have, an idea I want that. Is coming, from this intuition. A, lot of observations you couldn't even articulate it yeah we, on, a create a wheel and then. You say well I got it people have created wheels for a long time and but I will say to you but forget. About what people are graded why the hell did you say a wheel what. Is that mean for you and as you dig into it and you dig into that big. Bank of knowledge which is intuition. You. Will. Have created, something unique, your. Wheel so, I say all of that to say that I think two, things about artificial, intelligence from, my really, distant perspective one. The. Obvious thing that really what's, happening, is the natural, artificial, is kind, of merging, and we're all because it's kind of gonna be difficult to really separate between the two and already is all, right the whole emotional consciousness is being something that's biological. Is crazy it's clearly distributed, and so clearly there's this merger going on. Not. Fairly, so, a big, issue in that is is, learning I'm, learning to adapt to the rapid, aid that we don't all learn and so that's a huge issue I. Think. The second thing and this gets to thriving. Humanity. In the long term I think, that my, intuition, is that what is happening, here with the advance. Of artificial intelligence is, what makes us human most. Human which. Is not probably. The calculus, that I learned really well when I was like 20, years of age but, it's actually, that intuitive. Bank of knowledge of. My moment right, I own that and I own that in a way that. No. Computer however smart, wasn't, there can, now right and so being able to mine that and. You know it's, as you know as we're advancing, so rapidly towards. This future of artificial intelligence in present we're, discovering. That biology, is, like. A black, hole in terms of the complexity, and and. Sophistication. And you. Know so I my, guess, is that there will be a coexistence. Again. Not without pain. And and, I think there are a lot of issues as I say related. To equity and. How, we how we manage this okay, I'm trying. Really, hard to resist the temptation to just meander and ramble so I'm, gonna try to make this short as it possibly can. But. It's sort of piggybacks, off of Tom's comment and I don't know your name but but the comment you had after um. And something you said about the. Italian Renaissance I recently. Read. The the new biography of Leonardo, da Vinci and. One, of the things that struck me was. And, this is according to the author like, how. Often. That he, had a patron who just gave him so much leeway and so. Much time and then he spent the time just doing whatever he wanted or moving, on and not you, know procrastinating. And. Um. You. Know so he left angry, patron after angry patron. But. That. Freedom that he had to do whatever he want led to two or three amazing, masterpieces. And a lot of sort of half you, know a lot of half-finished, stuff, a lot of. Exploration. And. As. As. The. Other two commenters, alluded, to now. And. As you said now like we're so goal, oriented and so quarterly, goal yearly, goal focused. That. I I know you you said in response to both those that the policy, is not like. I guess the focus of what you're thinking on with this but it does seem like a natural like. Next. Step to seem, like how can we unlock more potential, from people there are a lot of creative people how do we unlock that. Responded. That yes okay cool so that's in there you know I read. This you know sorry in, fact I go. More into this in the book. Take. Leonardo. As. You say the the patron, or what I call activator, was played. A big role patrons. Look different today, it's true we we have the Larry page's and we have the Bill, Gates but the.
Radical. Change in patronage, if you will is gone grassroots so there's a kind of but but activators. Are. Everywhere. But activators, matter and. The. Second thing is this, what I call culture, lab like a Florence, he was super, lucky to have been born in Florence, but he was born in Florence right so there's all this stuff going on and experimentation. Was, being invited and, and. There. Was a culture. That could look at the experiment. Of the Duomo and call. It beautiful, right. And so there was this ability, to see. The new, as. As, potentially, being very beautiful, and so it invited, so there's a culture. That. Mattered and. Finally. Leonardo. Would be a real. Sort. Of model, of the the kind of dimensions. That I'm sort, of referring to and so we do need this. Environment. That. Includes. People. Willing, to bet on you. And. Particularly bet on your ability, to realize, a dream. That. Matters to more than you, we. Do need. You. To be surrounded by those who can appreciate it and. And and, we, we. Do fundamentally. Need you. So. I think that while again. Getting, back to the earlier point. We. Are in, and, and you are here at Google and and I am to the extent that I'm at, Harvard in environments. Where you see a lot of the. Kind. Of success, of the last twenty thirty and maybe more years kind, of an inertial, wave. That, we're part of that. May. Be a little, bit overwhelming particular if we try to move away from it it's. Just got a giving Garriga like but. That. Fortunately. That. Is not the whole of human, experience, right now and I think that all I can say which is kind of how I managed. My relationship, with Harvard University from super, delighted, and lucky, that Harvard still. Calls. Me what, are their faculty members but. I spend a lot of time away and I spend a lot of time in my own space and I. Think, that, depending. Upon who you are and and, the kind of pioneering you want to do. An. Enlightened. Organization. I'm. Sure Google should. Give you that space now it's just important to understand that Leonardo. Led. A really risky life. He. Was got about half he a lot of the time he was kind of died, didn't feel he didn't credit he had a lot of stuff and so being out alone is there's a lot of you, have, to realize that you, know hanging by your fingernails, is it looks, great when you then kind of got to the top of Mount Everest but you're. Mostly, hanging, from fingernails and and you got a. Moneda. Doll do more of that. So. That. Was a rambling response. To your rambling question well. I have, a very directed, short follow guess, what, what are some of the interventions. I guess specifically, you mentioned the foundation, that went to Cambridge, and then, you know I know and you're but I'm sure in your development of insulin that you had opportunities. Or things, that unlocked, that, ability, for you and. So I was just wondering like without getting too much into the weeds of policy like what are specific things you've seen besides, what you've already mentioned that have worked for you.
Know People. Who maybe otherwise would not have had the opportunity. Well. Let. Me say that. In. In. In, in in my case. And. Again I write quite you, know I write about it in the book and I also point this out and in other creator lives, I. Have. Found that. In. Pursuing. My. Dreams to, the extent that my dreams matter more than just to me I, have, very frequently, come to the edge where. This. Could mediate and I always found. Someone. Who. Came, and helped and this. Notion of activator, which obviously. In the retired Renaissance were some really famous ones but they're everywhere right now and one. Of the great. Joys of my own creative life is the discovery, that I'm not alone in that there's this kind of network. And. And so that's in, so, in the, inhaled, insulin case, I was a theoretical. Guide. Written a couple textbooks I had five, people in the world had read and, published. This article and I had a series. Of people a venture, capitalist, I mentioned who was more, than a venture capitalist who played a really big role in my life but many many many many people so is there a recipe, I. Don't. Know I mean I I have. Lived for many years in Paris and have had lots of conversations with, the. French government and, and and academia, and France well how do we create like Harvard, in in you know paradigm, is, it an endowment is that what we need you know and so my. Big. Point and maybe this is the most concrete. Thing I can say. There. Are there's, an amazing education, in in France and in many ways and and really. Just such bright people and such. A rich culture, but one thing that is. That's. Not thrive there, speaking really generally is as, a student, when, I leave. The, university, there's, there's. Not a possibility, to take a big risk and and. And and and and and do really really well really, quickly I mean it's more of a a. Climb. The ladder kind, of phenomenon and I think that the. The. The creating. Of opportunities. For, the. Dreamers is is, the the most, important, thing that we can possibly do and I think it's it is a challenge, for a big, successful organizations, to create those because it's hard to measure. The value of the little, experiment, in the context, of the big big mission. But. But, that's, betting. And maybe I'll finish but he's just saying that in. I was just, just an Atlanta speaking, to some people and and and that question was well what. Can we most do to. Like do our kids you know and to help, them create, a world that they want to live in and, kind. Of create what matters in my point to them against, the point I made in the book is that the, best thing we can do I think to our kids is help, them see that they matter right. And so I think that you can't create. Anything. That matters if if you don't feel, you matter first, and so that. Mattering. For me has, generally, been people, from my dad -, lots of people my wife lots of people who kind of bet on me in a certain way and say you matter and so, that's that's. The. Easy. Answer what. Does it mean to matter. What. Does it mean to matter well as I say it's, a little bit and I say, more in the book almost, anything matters at. Some moment right I reading drop matters that's some mom arranged so that everything matters so, it's a provocation but, what it means in the title of my book these. Are things that matter not just to you but to, many and for a long period of time and so a, way. To translate, that illegal even that if, you dig into it's kind of so but. They. Matter so much that people want them to endure right. And so they will help, them endure it's like what you want of your kid when your kid leaves home you want the kid to thrive right, you want every and that's not just your, girl being, you, know really entrepreneurial, but, people wanting her you. Know it's people wanting her in the room people and so. Creating. Something that matters is creating, something that's alive and that, sort of has a right to live.