Sparx: Season 1, Episode 7

What AI is doing with us

Artificial intelligence learns how we humans work and knows exactly what we want? Psychologist Allan Guggenbühl denies it. The human psyche does not work that simply.

When we were still hunters and gatherers, we could easily interpret the smallest sounds in the forest, recognise animals and plants and also read the other person much better. In the course of time, however, we have handed over these and other skills to technology. In the future, technology – or more precisely, an artificial intelligence – could take over even more competencies, such as voting or ordering in a restaurant. Because an AI can learn from our past actions and deduce our future course of action.

However, psychologist and best-selling author Allan Guggenbühl says this is a little too short-sighted: “This understanding is based on a very specific view of human beings. Namely, that people will continue to decide and behave in this way in the future based on their current preferences and behaviour. But this understanding is based on a big fallacy."

Allan Guggenbühl gets to the bottom of this fallacy and shows how our “craziness” makes us what we are and why an AI is never able to imitate this ability.


Allan Guggenbühl (* 1952) is the leading psychologist in the German-speaking area and a best-selling author. His most important publications include “The terrible – Mythological Reflections on the Abysmal in Man” and “The incredible Fascination of Violence”. For a bottle of wine, Allan began to counsel difficult adolescents in the 1980s. He hasn’t been out of it since. When Allan has time (which is basically never), he plays guitar, goes biking or studies islands.

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