Today we look at an important first. It’s the start of the VESA podcast, and as our first guest we meet David Orban, who generously gave his time to record this conversation. A previous iteration of a podcast had already launched in 2017, with notable guests like Charlie Lee, but now was the right time for a rebrand and an acceleration in connecting with people in the scene.
It was also a blessing in disguise that the zoom recording of this podcast was recorded with zoom, and VESA mistakenly remembered the recording quality as HD, which it wasn’t. Fortunately, upscaling 360p video with AI has come to make it a sharp 4K, even if the book titles are erased.
David is an investor, entrepreneur, author, keynote speaker and thought leader in the global technology landscape. His entrepreneurial achievements span several businesses founded and grown over more than twenty years. VESA and David first met in Dubai during VESA’s exhibition at the Dubai Mall. Their initial conversation covered many in-depth topics, touching on the ever-evolving tech space, entrepreneurship, AI and ethics, as well as what the future holds for the scene itself. This is an interpretive summary of David’s recent appearance on the VESA Podcast and what that conversation was like.
To listen to the full episode on the VESA Podcast on You Tube, click here:
David joins the podcast from his home in northern Italy, where he feels comfortable surrounded by his impressive library of books and high-quality Italian cuisine.
As a starting point, VESA dove into David’s view of his inner science, as he knew from their previous conversation that David had performed a Vipassana, or silent retreat. Complete silence without technology or any type of entertainment or study materials may seem counterintuitive for a technologist, but David called the retreat extremely impactful and positive.
– It’s actually not easy, David said.
It describes the amount of discipline it takes to completely retreat into a world without electronic devices, books, newspapers, or even eye contact with others. The discipline was self-administered, understanding the benefits of practice.
He adds that it is recommended to meditate one to two hours a day after completing the retreat, but he has not yet implemented it into his daily routine.
The conversation then turns to the opposite end of the spectrum, a world of electronic or total machine integration. How far are we from the pike? Will we realize this when the chip is installed, or has it already been installed years ago because of our association with the technology?
David proposes that everything we experience can be dissected on the objective-subjective axis, and further by taking into consideration time and place. What is a subjective experience with little or no relevance to others, compared to timeless truths, will depend greatly on how the information is organized and presented. Technology as we know it is deeply tied to the aspect of time and place. Technology socializes us and directs us toward necessary skills and behaviors. This influence must be modulated, he asserts.
VESA then wants to present to David an idea that he has been developing in his head for a while. The concept is about the evolution of religion and what the next step might look like in what could arguably be called a post-Christian world. He suggests that an amalgam of religions could emerge, taking traditions from different faiths, an MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) of religion, as he calls it.
– I recommend people to be immodest, but humble, David begins, describing a person who can connect the dots in different areas and from various sources of authority.
– Many are uncomfortable with accepting revealed religions as the answer to essential questions, but as I saw after the fall of the Berlin Wall, people need religious experiences and I respect that, so I think an evolution to bridge that gap could very well happen. well being in progress.
In many ways, you have to regress 200 years to resonate with the Church’s current paradigm of long wooden pews and hymns.
VESA notes that a similar “religious” belief that surfaces in different fields is the idea that we live in a simulation. This, he says, results in an attitude that, coupled with rapidly evolving AI, could lead to a pathologically atheistic society, lacking spiritual nourishment and transcendence.
The puzzling phenomenon of our time is that we have at the same time the most advanced non-biological technology and the demand to once again become the center of the universe, so to speak.
Are we living in a simulation?
Inspired by its revelations with its new AI Series Juxtaposers, VESA presents an idea that in today’s cultural context of left and right, what seems to be missing is the differentiation between the establishment and the anti-establishment, and how these labels can sometimes backfire simply because they are thought-provoking, as in the case of Russell Brandt, who is now considered a right-wing person simply because he expressed anti-establishment views. This axiom is at the heart of the Juxtaposers series, which includes polarizing figures like Andrew Tate, Ben Shapiro, AOC and more.
– If you think about it, the Amish are more argumentative than most, it’s just a lack of dopamine, he explains why he wanted to draw parallels between Andrew Tate as an Amish apple picker.
As a transition to another cultural context, VESA says he had mixed feelings about a video he watched with Sam Altman and Android Jones discussing AI. For him, the very name Android and its fervent opposition to AI stood in stark contrast.
– In the past, we organized ourselves into guilds to control who had the right to express certain professions. Today, perhaps for the first time, we have the opportunity to open the arts to everyone, says David.
– The current situation is that of a dam on the verge of bursting. The “artist” label is open to everyone and we are therefore going to develop new measures of value, he explains.
Listen on YouTubeVESA gives an example of controlling a rap song via AI that was solely produced as a soundtrack for him painting in his studioand how even the most forgiving king wouldn’t have thought of doing something like that before.
VESA then wants to know more about David’s company Actioneer. He presents himself as an example of someone who has mastered his craft and is quite observant, but is hesitant to take on the role of CEO or COO within a corporate setting, something modern-day artists need to take into account. What can a company like Actioneer do for artists and others who find themselves in a similar situation?
– The world is so complex that we need all the help we can get. AI can help us decode our questions better than ever, as we examine a paradigm in which the old system of education, getting a job, working and dying is being challenged, says David .
– Startup founders are the spearhead, and the entrepreneurial spirit is what Actioneer supports. For a privileged few, this help has been available for some time through incubators and mentorships, and Actioneer can democratize this help and make it very abundant, he explains.
– We believe the world will be as saturated with tools like Actioneer as it is now with Internet access, because they are an integral part of our modern lives, he says.
VESA summarizes the need for these toolss noting that if you don’t become an entrepreneur as an artist, you won’t be an artist for long.
Till next time,
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