Mathematics describes the real world of atoms and acorns, stars and stairs, with remarkable precision.

Is mathematics invented by humans just like chisels and hammers and pieces of music?

Or is mathematics discovered—always out there, somewhere, like mysterious islands waiting to be found?

Lex Fridman interviews Roger Penrose, a physicist, mathematician, and philosopher at University of Oxford.

He has made fundamental contributions in many disciplines from the mathematical physics of general relativity and cosmology to the limitations of a computational view of consciousness. This conversation is part of the Artificial Intelligence podcast.

Time Index:

  • 0:00 – Introduction
  • 3:51 – 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • 9:43 – Consciousness and computation
  • 23:45 – What does it mean to “understand”
  • 31:37 – What’s missing in quantum mechanics?
  • 40:09 – Whatever consciousness is, it’s not a computation
  • 44:13 – Source of consciousness in the human brain
  • 1:02:57 – Infinite cycles of big bangs
  • 1:22:05 – Most beautiful idea in mathematics